New Delhi [India], December 8 (ANI): Flag carrier Air India has announced plans to refurbish its entire legacy of widebody fleet, comprising 27 Boeing B787-8 and 13 B777 aircraft, committing over USD 400 million for the project.
According to a company statement, this refurbishment will see a complete overhaul of existing cabin interiors, including the addition of latest seats and best inflight entertainment across all classes.
It will also see the introduction of a premium economy cabin on both fleets. The first-class cabin will also be retained on the 777s.
Air India has engaged leading London-based product design companies -- JPA Design and Trendworks -- to assist with the cabin interior design refurbishment programme. According to the company, the collaboration brings together two experts in the fields of aviation and interiors that have produced designs for major brands including Taj Hotels, The Orient Express and Herman Miller International.
With this significant investment, Air India said it was committed to providing its passengers with a comfortable, modern, and technologically advanced cabin to facilitate a travel experience that is comparable with the best airlines in the world.
The complete interior refurbishment entails significant regulatory and engineering preparation, which commenced earlier this year. This lengthy but necessary process is expected to lead to the first aircraft entering service in mid-2024, according to the national carrier.
Commenting on the widebody cabin refurbishment programme, Campbell Wilson, Managing Director (MD) & Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Air India, said, "Under our Vihaan.AI transformation program, Air India has committed to attaining the highest standards of product and service befitting of a world-class airline. We know that, at present, the cabin product on our 40 legacy widebody aircraft falls short of this standard."
He said although the project commenced some months ago, the company is delighted to now publicly announce this significant investment in a complete interior refit, and it is confident that, when revealed, the new interiors will delight customers and show Air India in a new light.
"We are working closely with partners to accelerate the refit process as fast as possible and, in the meantime, leasing in at least 11 new widebody aircraft with brand new interiors to improve our offering at the earliest opportunity," he added. (ANI)