Sunday, December 16, 2012

Air India Express: Flying low but seeking desert bloom


Mumbai: Facing stiff competition from Gulf airlines, Air India Express plans to woo passengers by improving its passenger service. Some of the steps contemplated are Malayalam announcements and South Indian delicacies on flight.
The low-cost arm of Air India flies an the Boeing 737 fleet and gets 75 per cent of its business from Kerala. The headquarters is now being shifted to Kochi, and will become operational from next month. Apart from competition, the airline is receiving bad press in Kerala following frequent flight disruptions and business losses. The frequent flight cancellations had given rise to anti-Air India sentiment in the state, prompting the local government to revive its propsoal to start Air Kerala, which would cater to the migrant Keralities.
K C Venugopal, minister of state of aviation and MP from Kerala's Alappuzha district, reviewed the airline's performance at a meeting on Friday. Venugopal is taking keen interest in the airline's functioning and has created an email id — ixmailstominister@nic.in — to receive passenger feedback and complaints. "My office will personally look into the emails and action will be taken in seven days,'' Venugopal announced in Kochi on Friday.
16/12/12 Aneesh Phadnis/Business Standard