Seeking to expand its ticket sales and distribution network globally, national carrier Air India has decided to appoint general sales agents (GSAs) in as many as 56 countries.
"The airline is in the process of appointing general sales agents in as many as 56 countries," an airline source said.
A GSA is a sales representative for an airline in a specific country or a region responsible for selling tickets and cargo space, apart from providing other services relating to air passenger transportation.
The GSAs would be appointed in these 56 countries across the Asia-Pacific, Gulf and West Asia, Africa, Europe, Australia and Latin America, sources said, adding that strengthening of the distribution network across the globe would help the carrier boost its international sales.
They would have an initial contract for five years, which would be subject to review every year.
Following the 2008 global meltdown and mounting losses, the cash-strapped airline had shut down a large number of its overseas online offices (operated by the airline itself) to cut costs.
Keeping the high costs of running a full-fledged office in many countries, this time round, the airline is going for more GSAs in these countries, the sources said, adding only 10 countries would have online offices.
But now with its much-awaited Rs 18,000 crore financial restructuring plan getting the nod from the SBI-led consortium of banks, Air India is trying to revive its fortune both by cutting costs and creating additional revenue streams.