SkyTeam courting Air India (a.k.a. the rebound after being dumped by *A)

Air India may still have a shot at becoming an awesome airline, and that one is all thanks to joining the SkyTeam ***drum beats*** 😉 I am sure the people at Air India’s helm are watching a lot of “How I Met Your Mother”, and decided to act awesome in line with the Bro Code. After being embarrassed by the Star Alliance, who AI took 4 years to ‘comply’ with the membership conditions of, and then *A leaving them alone at the altar, the news reports are now talking of SkyTeam talking to the Government of India about inducting Air India into their alliance. Speculations were ripe about this as early as the beginning of August, as per the Centre…

Continue Reading »

Is Jet Airways losing its golden touch?

About 24 hours ago, I got off my flight(s) with Jet Airways which brought me back from a hectic vacation in NYC, SEA and DCA to Mumbai. As usual, I took my favourite airline on the way back, to fly JFK-BRU-BOM in Jet Airways Business Class. The reason I have enjoyed my experiences in the front and the back of a Jet Airways flight is the eye for details, and the hospitable, welcome approach they have to flying rather than most other carriers. I’ve been used to their (very) good service over a period of time, and which is reason enough for me to stick to them as my preferred airline. And sometimes also go the extra mile to convert…

Continue Reading »

Breaking: Here is how you get on ANA’s 787

Social media seems to have been a key piece in the strategy of airlines for a while, and in line with this, ANA has decided to reserve 2 tickets for people who like its Facebook page here, and then enter a photo-contest to win 2 tickets for the 787 flight. The task at hand is simple. You need to click your picture with the 787 digits and your smile :), and use your Facebook account to upload it on to ANA’s application on their FB page created for this purpose. Only one entry per account is allowed, and this activity needs to be completed till September 5, 2011 23:59 Pacific Time. From September 6 to September 14, 2011 these pictures…

Continue Reading »

Jet Airways Citibank Credit Cards devalue upgrade benefits from September 2011

The Jet Airways Citibank co-branded Platinum Card was one of the more popular and advantageous airline credit cards in India. It looks like it had enough of the high table so it decided to jump off right away. I first heard of the devaluation on this flyertalk thread. I have been holding this card for quite a few years, and was in fact the only credit card I used for a very long time and pay a fee for. When I read this new scheme of things, I could not believe my eyes, and since I am travelling I haven’t received my letter from Citi yet. I checked up on Citibank’s India website, and it confirmed the horror story to…

Continue Reading »

Jet Airways pilots flying ‘high’!

This piece of news kind of got me scared a bit, but it is definitely not keeping me away from flying. A recent piece of information tabled in the Indian Parliament reported that there were 67 pilots who were found positive in the pre-flight medical test over the years 2009 to 2011, and one third of them were from Jet Airways. Kingfisher followed next along with Indigo. Make your own interpretations, but for me, this did not change anything except for wondering if Kingfisher Airlines was not providing enough brew to it’s crew, considering it is a sister concern of India’s biggest spirits and beer maker! On a serious note, it also meant that Air India, despite all the wrong…

Continue Reading »

Things are changing at Indian airlines….

I happened to remember this one series of hoardings I had spotted a while back while travelling in the country. I thought it would be interesting to share, and managed to find this on an aviation humor website.    Looking back, can someone tell me who changed and who did not, eventually? I think 9W/Jet Airways turned out to be the eventual winner. While the flying models of Kingfisher are doing their job at a bleeding airline where service standards are going down and Go Air has no clear direction to go in!

Continue Reading »

Heads roll at Air India

When Air India got kicked out of the Star Alliance even before it joined, I had a feeling that someone would be fired to fix the blame. And lo and behold, it did not take long for the Government of India to take a decision that it was the Chairman and Managing Director of the airline, Arvind Jadhav, a career bureaucrat who was not able to turn around the airline. So, this morning, it got into the news that he was removed from his post. Air India was a profitable operation until 2005 when it got merged with Indian Airlines. Earlier, AI used to take care of the international market, while IC was the domestic carrier. The rationale for merger…

Continue Reading »

If it ain’t broken, still fix it with @DeltaAssist

I blogged recently about my trashy experience with Delta on my last flight with them here. The crux of the issue on hand was that I complied with their guidelines, and the outdated Delta IT systems did not pick up my Flying Blue status and honour the priveleges. After the flight, I tweeted this to @DeltaAssist. I had asked them to fix this beforehand but I guess I got on with the wrong agent who did not fix the problem. The agents at Delta sent me a direct message back on Twitter asking me for my ticket details and the problem. After a brief conversation on these direct messages, they accepted that they had made a mistake and offered to refund…

Continue Reading »

IndiGo turns 5!

One of my favourite airline in the Indian skies is Indigo, and they turn 5 this August. Ever since they first took to the skies, Indigo has been on the low-cost, point-to-point model and essentially promising a no-nonsense, professional travel experience! And have they delivered or have they delivered!? Yes, they are best on-time performance airline in the industry, and the professional experience they offer has helped them sky-rocket to the number 3 spot as per marketshare for all domestic airlines in India (June 2011, DGCA). Indigo made waves when it first went out to order a 100 Airbus A-320s to build one of the largest Airbus fleets in India. They are inducting one plane a month right now, and this is…

Continue Reading »

Jet Airways brings fine dining to Hong Kong flights

Jet Airways seems to be doing pretty good loads on the BOM-HKG-BOM segments. I’ve flown it a couple of times in the front and the back and it always has been a full plane to the best of my knowledge. It seems the demand for the premium cabins though never got satiated and hence 9W is replacing the A330-200 it flies on this segment to a B777-300ER with effect from August 21. The B777 allows them to put more seats in the Premiere cabin (the Business class) and also introduce their very famous First Class on this route. 9w will be the only airline for the time being to offer first class on this route. The latest addition to this…

Continue Reading »

10,500 miles away: slightly underwhelming Jet Airways Business class and upto mark Delta customer service!

On my recent travels to SEA, I chose to take the following routing BOM-BRU-JFK on Jet Airways Premiere and JFK-CVG-SEA on Delta Coach. So, if you want to really kill a good 18 hour flying experience, you get onto coach, specially that of Delta to meet some (un)grateful customer service agents to start with. I flew BOM-BRU on 9w228 and BRU-JFK on 9w226. The flights were overall good but there were minor irritants that I found. For example, on the BOM-BRU sector the meal service was rushed, and on BRU-JFK the in-flight power just would not work. So, this was not the best Jet Airways experience I had, but still much better than so many others! Here are some pictures…

Continue Reading »