The occasion follows a four-year delay and significant wrangling over compensation claims. While the final amount was not revealed, the delivery of the new aircraft will come as a considerable relief to the ailing airline.
“Today is a great day for Air India as the most technologically advanced and fuel-efficient airplane in the world joins our fleet,” said Rohit Nandan, Air India’s chairman & managing director. “The 787 will allow Air India to open new routes.”
These new routes are likely to include a direct connection between India and Australia, although the first B787 will be put into service on Air India’s flights to London. In total, the Delhi-based carrier has ordered 27 Dreamliners, with another two expected to arrive within the next few weeks. The twin-aisle aircraft is equipped with 256 seats – 18 in business class seats and 238 in economy.