Tata Group-owned airlines Air India welcomed the nation’s first-ever widebody Airbus A350-900 in New Delhi on Saturday. With this, Tata Group became the first Indian aircraft operator to possess and introduce the A350-900 in its fleet which will enter commercial service in January 2024.
“India’s first @Airbus A350-900 has come home in the bold, new Air India livery, and it received a grand welcome at @DelhiAirport,” the airline wrote on social media platform X. “It is touchdown of a new Air India. For a new, resurgent India.”
— Air India (@airindia) December 23, 2023
The Airbus, designed by Collins Aerospace, is well equipped with a three-class cabin configuration with 316 seats. Furthermore, the aircraft contains 28 private Business Class suites with complete flat beds, 24 Premium Economy seats with adequate legroom and miscellaneous distinguishing features, and 264 Economy class seats that are extremely spacious. The entire aircraft seating is facilitated by the latest generation Panasonic eX3 in-flight entertainment system and HD screens, making the flying experience all the more satisfying.
Aircraft will initially begin its operations on domestic routes for crew familiarisation and then be followed by longer-haul flights to destinations across continents. The company is yet to announce the plane’s schedule of commercial operations.
Registered as VT-JRA, the aircraft is the first of Air India’s 20 Airbus A350-900 on order, with five more scheduled for deliveries through March 2024. Air India has ordered 250 new aircraft with Airbus, including 20 A350-1000, 40 A350s, which will comprise 20 A350-900s and A350-1000, and 140 narrow-body A321neo and 70 A320neo planes.
“The A350 is not just metal and engines; it’s the flying embodiment of the relentless efforts of all Air India employees towards our airline’s continuing transformation and of our commitment to setting new benchmarks. It is also, in many ways, a declaration of Indian aviation’s resurgence on the world stage.” Campbell Wilson, CEO and Managing Director of Air India said.