Air India Express
|Commenced operations||29 April 2005|
|Company slogan||"Simply Priceless"|
|Parent company||Air India Charters Limited|
|Key people||Rohit Nandan, CMD|
Air India Express is a low-cost airline subsidiary of Air India, headquartered in Kochi, operating mainly from Indian state of Kerala. It operates services mainly to the Middle East and Southeast Asia. The airline belongs to Air India Charters Limited, a whole owned subsidiary of Air India Limited, which was formed in order to facilitate the seamless merger of Air India and Indian. Today Air India Express operates nearly 100 flights per week, mainly from southern states of Tamil Nadu and Kerala in India.
The airline was established in May 2004, after a long demand from Malayalee expatriate communities living in Middle East, seeking for a low cost budget airline. The airline started operations on 29 April 2005 with a flight from Thiruvananthapuram to Abu Dhabi. Delivery of the first aircraft for Air India Express took place on 22 February 2005 when a new production Boeing 737-86Q (leased from Boullioun Aviation Services) was handed over.
The airline has its head office in the Air India Building in Nariman Point, Mumbai. In December 2012 the Air India director board ratified the proposal to move the head office to Kochi, effective 1 January 2013. K.C. Venugopal, the Union Minister of State for Civil Aviation, said that the move would occur in phases, beginning with the opening of the Kochi office on 1 January (New Year's Day). The airline's engineering centre was to move to Thiruvananthapuram.
The airline's engineering centre has already moved to Thiruvananthapuram.The Maintenance, Repair, and Overhaul (MRO) facility of Air India Charters Limited (AICL) at Trivandrum International Airport has been given permission to carry out the crucial ‘C’ checks of their Boeing 737-800 fleet. With this, Trivandrum will be one of the 3 cities in the country where ‘C’ checks can be performed.‘C’ checks for a plane is carried out every 3,000 flights or in 15months and engineers will calibrate flight control, repair components and test major internal systems. They will also conduct minor structural inspections, rigging tests and post-check flights. Earlier the MRO facility in Trivandrum was handling 2 aircraft at a time and phase-checks of 3 aircraft a week.The Rs.110-crore MRO facility spread across 6.07 hectares was commissioned on December 16, 2011. The facility is state-of-the-art with 5,000SF of workshop, 10,000SF apron, electrically operated and vertically moving hangar door system, warehouse and office space. Initially, the MRO will handle engineering requirements of the aircraft in the fleet of Air India Express and later Airbus A-320.
The Air-India Express fleet includes the following aircraft (as of June 2013):
|Boeing 737-800||21||186||4 aircraft sold and leased back|
As of Jan 2013 the average age of the Air-India Express Fleet is 5.1 years
Despite being a low cost carrier, Air India Express offers a complimentary pre-set snack box or light meal to its passengers with veg and non veg options. Limited entertainment facilities are available for passengers.
Accidents & Incidents
- ^ On 22 May 2010, Air India Express Flight 812, a Boeing 737-800 (registered VT-AXV), flying on the Dubai – Mangalore route overshot runway 24 on landing at Mangalore International Airport, killing 152 passengers and 6 crew members of the 166 people on board. The aircraft crashed into a wooded valley at the end of the runway and burst into flames. Only 8 people survived the crash and 8 people did not board the craft.
- On 25 May 2010, an Air India Express Boeing 737-800 flying from Dubai to Pune, India experienced a sudden 7,000 foot drop when the co-pilot bumped the control column while adjusting his seat. The captain, who was outside of the cockpit at the time of the incident, returned to the cockpit and recovered the 737 from its dive.
Each Air-India Express aircraft features a different tail design that reflects a facet of Indian culture, history and tradition.
- "Kochi to be Air India Express headquarters." Rediff. 31 December 2010. Retrieved on 5 February 2013.
- "Contact Us." Air India Express. Retrieved on 5 February 2013. "Head office address is: Air India Express Air - India Building, Nariman Point, Mumbai - 400 021, India."
- Ramavarman, T. "Shifting of Air India Express headquarters to Kochi gets nod." Times of India. 14 December 2012. Retrieved on 5 February 2013.
- Staff Reporter. "Air India Express route scheduling from city soon." The Hindu. 7 January 2013. Retrieved on 5 February 2013.
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- "Jet crash kills 158 in India; 8 survive". 2010-05-23.
- "Indian official: 158 dead in Air India plane crash in Mangalore". Wire Update/BNO News. 2010-05-22.
- "Air India flight from Dubai crashes in India". MSNBC. 2010-05-21.
- "Casualties feared in Air India crash". CNN. 22 May 2010. Retrieved 22 May 2010.
- "India plane crash in Mangalore leaves nearly 160 dead". BBC News. 2010-05-22. Retrieved 2010-05-22.
- "Report: Co-pilot moved seat, sent jetliner plummeting". CNN. 2010-11-30.
- "Report Cites 'Panicked' Co-Pilot in Air India Jetliner Dive". The Wall Street Journal. 2010-11-28.
- "'Panicky pilot' caused Indian passenger jet plunge". AFP. 2010-11-29.
- Flickr - Rick Schlamp
- Schlamp, Rick. (2007-02-07) Air-India Express VT-AXP "Hamsa Damayanthi" | Flickr - Photo Sharing!. Flickr. Retrieved on 2010-08-12.
-  by Raja Ravi Varma
- Photo Search Results | Airliners.net
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