Jet Airways Wants Two Boeing 777s Back From Etihad

Wednesday, 22nd April 2015 at 08:24am

According to some reports Indian airliner Jet Airways might be asking Etihad Airways to return the two Boeing 777 planes it has leased to the Gulf-based carrier.

As a part of their strategic partnership Jet Airways has leased seven aircrafts to Etihad Airways, including five Boeing 777-300ERs. Currently, the Dubai-based company owns 24 percent of Jet Airways.

A source close to the Indian carrier said:

"Jet Airways may ask Etihad to return two of the five Boeing 777s, which were leased to the Gulf partner."

The two carriers had plans to connect several routes between India and United States via an overseas hub Jet Airways has in Abu Dhabi. This would include: Delhi to New York, Bengaluru to Chicago and Mumbai to Newark routes.

With their Indian partner wanting its Boeings back, it remains to be seen how Etihad will handle the service from Abu Dhabi to New York. They have opened a second flight on this service last year in March, which is operated with Boeing 777-300ER.

Originally, Jet Airways was supposed to operate this flight beginning on 1st May, 2014, but couldn't after the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) lowered India's aviation safety grade.

Because of this, Jet Airways and other India's airliners could not operate into United States or enter into code share partnerships with local carriers. The situation changed earlier in April this year, as the FAA reinstated India's aviation safety rating to Category 1.

Asked about this, a spokesman for Jet Airways explained the company is looking at all venues before it makes a definite decision and these issues will be taken to the board.

The spokesperson said:

"We are currently evaluating the opportunities and any final decision will be taken only after discussion and approval by the Board."

Jet Airways is currently the only carrier from India to fly to United States along with Air India. Passengers can fly from New Delhi to Newark, New Jersey.

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