Air India was originally founded as Tata Airlines in 1932 and its name was officially truncated as Air India in 1946. It is a state-owned enterprise and is headquartered in New Delhi. The primary operation hub for Air India is located at Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi and its secondary hub is Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport, Mumbai. Domestically, Air India is India’s third largest carrier. Internationally, it is the largest international airline in terms of market share. It was the first Asian airline to include a jet aircraft in its fleet. In 2017 Air India covers 89 domestic and international destinations across four continents. It operates a fleet of 118 modern aircraft of different Airbus and Boeing models.
Air India shares code with more than 26 major airlines in order to expand its services to more destinations and to offer smooth transitions in layover airports. The list below shows a sample of them:
Air India offers First Class, Executive Class, and Economy Class. It serves affluent as well as average passengers when it comes to ticket price, services, and amenities offered.
: First Class cabin features luxury and comfort. Seats recline to 180 degrees converting to comfortable beds. Seats are designed to be either a window or aisle seats to enhance the freedom to walk around and to enjoy the scenery outside the plane. While on board, the passengers are provided with entertainment programs of several types to spend wonderful time during their flights.
This class offers business passengers distinctive travel experience featuring lavish style. The passengers enjoy outstanding on-ground services and in-flight amenities similar to those on the First class above explained. For instance, seats are spacious with either direct access to the aisle to the window to enjoy the panoramic view from the airplane on selected aircraft. Seats are supported with individuals TV screen to spend amusing time watching the latest entertainment programs of over 500 hours of of movies, TV shows, and music from international and local Indian cinema. Air India Executive class passengers are eligible for waiting lounges.
Air India Economy class offers travelers’ seamless first-hand travel experience on cost-effective budget. The passengers are privileged with many in-flight services. The cabin is equipped with improved illumination and temperature control, AVOD, and a bilingual magazine published in Hindi and English. The passengers can spend unforgettable moments during their flights while watching their favorite movies.
All classes are allowed hand luggage and checked baggage on Air India. It allows one piece of cabin baggage weighing 8 kgs maximum per passenger on both domestic as well as international flights. In addition to that, safe personal items might be allowed such as a laptop, handbag, rug, a folding wheelchair or an umbrella. When it comes to checked baggage on domestic flights, the following scheme illustrates the size limits:
Indian cuisine has spread all over the world, but the best opportunity to try out the genuine taste of Indian cuisine is to travel onboard Air India on First class takes. The passengers indulge in the culinary skills of Air India’s chefs. The passengers are serviced with a cocktail followed by a collection of entrees that leaves no taste unexplored. They select their favorite dishes from Indian veg and non-veg dishes as well as continental cuisines along with beverages.
Air India' onboard shopping program named Sky Bazaar offers the passengers famous brands of duty-free products to buy their gifts and memorabilia and surprize their dear family members and friends.
Air India offers First Class and Executive Class passengers impressive on-ground services. They are offered exclusive check-in facilities and granted access to Air India glamorous Lounges available in the airlines’ operational airports inside India and in some international airports outside India or those of its partners. The passengers can spend relaxing time and memorable moments enjoying the world-class services that these lounges offer; from food, personal care services, to entertainment, Internet access, power outlets for charging electronic devices to carrying out business activities and relaxation. Out of dedication to customer satisfaction and to serve its clients in the Gulf Cooperation Countries, Air India has airport lounges in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Bahrain, Doha, Kuwait, Dammam, Riyadh, Jeddah, and Muscat.
Travelers with Air India can book their flight online and they can select their preferred seats on selected routes in return for nominal fees. To facilitate the check-in process, Air India provides online check-in services. Any traveler with a confirmed booking can check-in online via their PC or mobile via Air India Mobile Apps is available for iPhone and Android. Online check-in is available 48 hours to 90 minutes before flight departure time, bearing in mind that the travelers with special needs, such as unaccompanied minors, senior citizens and the like, are not eligible to avail online check-in. Passengers need to collect their boarding pass from Air India check-in counters at the airports. Air India counters close 40 minutes prior to the departure time of domestic flights and 60 minutes before departure time of international flights.
Tata Air Service used to carry mails for the British airline Imperial Airways. In the first year of establishment, it carried 155 passengers and 10.71 tons of mail.
The name of Tata Air Service was changed to Tata Airlines. Colombo and New Delhi routes were opened too in the same year.
Tata Airlines was nationalized and christened Air India.
The Government of India acquired 49% of India Air. Also on June, 8th, the same year, Air India operated its first international flight from Mumbai to Heathrow Airport in London.
Air India grew and introduced services to new destinations such as major European destinations, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Singapore and Nairobi in Kenya
Air India introduced Boeing 747-420 to its feet for the first time, becoming the first Asian airline to operate Jet aircraft.
Air India fleet size grew rapidly and different models of aircraft were introduced. In 1993, Air India flew from New Delhi to New York in its first non-stop flight between these two destinations.
Air India grew and opened new routes to Shanghai, China
Air India launched a low-cost subsidiary airline called Air India Express.
Air India merged with Indian Airlines under the name Air India Limited and it introduced Boeing 777 aircraft for the first time.
Air India joined Star Alliance on July, the 11th becoming the 27th member.
Air India became India’s third largest air carrier after IndiGo and Jet Airways.