Air India to reinstate 100% of its long-grounded fleet since Tata takeover

Mumbai: Air India is planning to reinstate 100 per cent of its “long-grounded” fleet since the takeover by the Tata Group two years ago.

According to a report in the Financial Express (FE), over 95 per cent of the “long-grounded” fleet, which included Boeing 787s, 777s, and narrow-body Airbus A320 type aircraft, has been made airworthy.

Sources said that out of all the “long-grounded” aircraft, only two are left to be reinstated into the fleet.

An official said, “Many of these aircraft were grounded due to lack of components and engine shortages. Now that we are witnessing an improvement in the supply chain, the remaining two will also be made airworthy soon.”

During the takeover by the Tatas, Air India had over 30 “long-grounded” aircraft in its fleet. Apart from components, even the cabin interiors had to be given a makeover, according to the FE report.

The official said, “Thousands of seats in all these aircraft were fixed, and the inflight entertainment systems restored in as many old aircraft as possible. In some cases, over 30,000 spares per aircraft were required. The entire cabin space was also spruced up.”

The official added that the airline has pledged over $400 million to completely refurbish its legacy widebody fleet of 43 Boeing 777s and 787s, starting 2024. The reinstated fleet has helped Air India increase fleet utilisation levels, along with making the network more resilient.

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