Air India has been working non-stop behind the scenes to up their game on a new flight which was announced inadvertently in May, but only showed up on the Air India website this week. Air India has been an old hand on flights across the pond with 5th freedom rights, and used to operated flights between London & New York till 2009 before pulling out (LHR-JFK till October 2008, and LHR-EWR from 2008 onwards to March 2009, per airlineroutes.net). They’ve been there since 1960, and started services with a 707, then a 747 and eventually a 777.
Air India will be launching a new Ahmedabad – London flight as of August 15, 2016, and further connect into Newark (EWR) on the same flight using Fifth freedom rights Air India has had for a very long time on this route. The service will be operated on a Dreamliner from Air India, which has 18 business class and 238 Economy Class seats.
The schedule for the flight is shared above, but repeated below for easier understanding:
- AI171 AMD0530 – 1015LHR1230 – 1500EWR 788 135
- AI172 EWR0020 – 1205LHR1400 – 0330+1AMD 788 4
- AI172 EWR2230 – 1015+1LHR1230+1 – 0200+2AMD 788 15
Evidently, the flight is the last departure from Newark to London, and leaves the same time as Virgin Atlantic for across the pond.
Free stopovers at London
Passengers travelling onwards to Ahmedabad can also choose to make a free stopover in London, once per trip, either at the start or the end of the trip.
To operate this flight, Air India is pulling out of one of their Delhi-London frequencies, and using that plane to get the 17th weekly service started on Air India between India and New York.
Air India’s recent experiments with the US of A seem to have begun to bear fruit. The Delhi – San Francisco flight is doing very well.
Move to Terminal 2
The flight will be operated from Terminal 2 when arriving and departing at London, so this means the nice Star Alliance Terminal rather than the Air India operations at Terminal 4 which are not so great.
Is anyone booked on this flight and ready to take one for the team to write a trip report?