Damaged seats cause Rs 3 crore loss for Air India since February
Air India incurred an estimated revenue loss of ₹3 crore over the past three months owing to around 1,500 damaged and unusable seats on its international flights that were left vacant.
Data provided by the airline said most of these seats were on Boeing 777 aircraft, operating between India and the United States and were left vacant between February and April. Air India did not have data on vacant seats from earlier periods.
A senior airline official said the data was compiled using a new portal, launched on May 1, and has been passed on to their staff at Air India Engineering Services Ltd (AIESL) who will repair the damaged seats on a priority basis.
“Earlier, a list of unusable seats had to be manually compiled and emailed to our seniors for further action. It was cumbersome and time-consuming. The new portal is more convenient because the seats can be identified much faster and serviced before being given to passengers,” said another official.
Dhananjay Kumar, a spokesperson for Air India, said, “The portal, created by our Delhi-based engineers, allows us to plan better and accommodate the passenger in an alternate flight if required. It reduces the margin of error and keeps our seniors in the loop.”
The portal, according to officials, will help identify seats that are frequently damaged as well as aircraft that run into problems most often so they can be sent for maintenance as soon as possible. The portals will be handled by each of Air India’s airport managers who were trained to use it via video conferencing.
Although most of its US-bound flights fly to capacity, Air India — which operates at 41 foreign airports — has been reporting losses on its international flights. The carrier is saddled with a debt of ₹55,000 crore, which the government has said will be clearing by strategic disinvestment.
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