AI plans to use Dreamliner on domestic routes to cut cost
The first of the 27 Boeing 787 aircraft is expected to join the fleet at the end of the month. Air India is the third global airline after All Nippon Airways and Japan Airlines to receive the fuel-efficient and eco-friendly aircraft.
"A key feature of the aircraft is fuel saving; it consumes 20 percent less fuel than other aircraft. The proposal to deploy the aircraft on domestic routes will help us save on high jet fuel cost which is on domestic routes," a senior Air India official told IANS.
The domestic air turbine fuel (ATF) prices have been a huge concern for the aviation industry, as the jet fuel sold domestically is 50-60 percent higher than international prices due to the addition of sales tax and value added tax by the states.
The ATF sold on international-bound flights, on the contrary, are considered export and hence exempted from central and state levies.
The Boeing 787 aircraft is made of composite materials. Its newly-developed engine and advanced flight technologies make it highly fuel-efficient. The plane can fly up to 16,000 km non-stop.
"Initially we have proposed that the aircraft be utilised on some domestic routes such as Mumbai-Delhi. This is being proposed keeping in mind the high-end corporate as well as general demand in the sector," the official said, not wishing to be named.