Air India To Debut As Star Alliance Member
Tuesday, 6th May 2014 at 03:43am
The world's largest airline alliance will finally get a full-member airline from Indian subcontinent when Air India formally joins the group in July.
The state-controlled carrier has already accomplished 45 out of the 64 requirements needed to be officially inducted to the alliance. The remaining requirement will be submitted late this month, according to Rohit Nandan, the airline's Chairman and Managing Director.
The CEOs of the existing member airlines will convene on June in London to cast their votes to formally welcome Air India's entry to the alliance. Mark Schwab, Star Alliance CEO, has indicated that the they are very excited to welcome Air India to their fold in July without specifying the exact date of its induction.
To recall, Air India first attempted to join the alliance in 2009 but after a few delays, the alliance finally rejected its application for membership in July 2011.
However, in December 2013, after more than three years since that rejection, the alliance changed heart and unanimously approved the airline's application for membership.
The executive was all praises to the airline which underwent through a tough chapter of its recent history after the merger with Indian Airlines, saying it has improved a lot in terms of infrastructure and fleet an a strong management team as well.
Air India is expected to change its flight schedules, especially in its international routes, to align to the Star Alliance member airlines which fly into India.
Being in the alliance, airlines have the edge over other carriers in that their customers can seamlessly connect flights to more than 1,200 destinations across six continents.
Air India has to comply with the implemented standards in the alliance especially in the customer service department. In fact, the airline has begun implementing a Customer Service Improvement Programme for its employees,
Nandan has admitted that the airline has requested IATA to do a survey on customer satisfaction on the carrier to keep tab of the progress in its efforts to improve customer service.
Air India, upon its ascension to the alliance on July, will become the 27th full-member airline of Star Alliance and the first carrier to come from India. The alliance has a combined network of over 1,260 airport destinations in more than 190 countries across six continents.
By: Pete Lee.