Air India will reduce the frequency of flights on certain US routes due to crew shortage issues for a temporary period, its chief Campbell Wilson said on Monday.
Six weekly flights to the US, three each to Newark and San Francisco will be trimmed. Wilson also said the airline will have 100 pilots for Boeing 777 planes in three months as they are being “activated” and around 1,400 cabin crew are in training. In recent months, there have been instances of some long haul flights getting impacted due to crew shortage issues. Wilson, who is the CEO and MD, said frequencies will be reduced on some US routes due to crew shortage issues.
The six weekly flights — three each to Newark and San Francisco — will be reduced due to shortage of crew. This will be in place for the coming two to three months, Wilson said. The airline has a staff strength of around 11,000 people, including flying and non-flying employees. “There is a lot happening,” he said, adding that the airline is shrinking and growing now. He was speaking at the CAPA India Summit in the national capital. Tata Group took control of loss-making Air India along with Air India Express and 50 per cent stake in AIATSL in January 2022.
Air India has put in place a road map under Vihaan.AI for transformation over a five-year period and has taken various measures, including committing USD 400 million to refurbish the interiors of its entire wide-body fleet. Last month, the airline announced placing orders for 470 aircraft from Airbus and Boeing, including 70 wide-body planes. Out of the total, 250 will be from Airbus and 220 from Boeing. There is also an option to purchase additional 370 aircraft from the two plane makers. Besides, the merger of AirAsia India, rebranded as AIX Connect, with Air India Express as well as the merger of Vistara with Air India have been initiated.