Take off from economy to biz class travel on AI flights

The facility is available on flights to the US, Europe, Australia, Japan and Hong Kong. On the domestic sector, the bidding system has begun on flights to six metros.

Air India has launched a new system that allows economy class travellers to bid for unsold business class seats on international and domestic flights.

The bidding system, termed 'business-like', was launched in the last week of December.

“We are giving people who have already booked tickets in economy class a chance to pay a little extra fare and come to the business class,” Air India Chairman and Managing Director Pradeep Singh Kharola told reporters here on Wednesday.

The facility is available on flights to the US, Europe, Australia, Japan and Hong Kong. On the domestic sector, the bidding system has begun on flights to six metros.

“If a business class seat goes vacant, it is a total loss. But if I drop the business class fares to fill up seats, there would be net gain,” Kharola said adding that Air India operates 4,500 business class seats every day.

Cost Cutting

In a bid to reduce catering costs, Air India has started carrying food from India for use on the return journey from foreign destinations.

“The food is taken from India in chillers and then it is heated whenever it has to be used,” Kharola said. This has been implemented on flights to Stockholm, Copenhagen, Birmingham and Madrid.

He said food costs three to four times more in these cities than in India.

Over the next few months, Air India will start serving food from India on its flights returning from the Gulf region, too.

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Take off from economy to biz class travel on AI flights

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