Air India has become the first airline to operate scheduled flights to Australia with the Boeing 787, with the airline’s inaugural direct flight from Delhi arriving in Sydney on Friday morning.
The new daily flights, triangulated with Melbourne, marks Air India’s return to Australia after a 22-year absence. The flights are operated by 256-seat configured 787s, and are the only direct service between Australia and India.
Four days a week the flights will oeprate Delhi-Sydney-Melbourne-Dehli, and three days a week Delhi-Melbourne-Sydney-Delhi.
“Sydney Airport is very pleased to welcome Air India back to Sydney after a 22-year absence,” Sydney Airport CCEO Kerrie Mather said.
“India is Australia’s largest unserved market. Last year, around 140,000 passengers travelled between Delhi and Sydney via Asian hubs.”
Said Melbourne Airport CEO Chris Woodruff: “We are delighted to welcome Air India to Melbourne Airport. Since 2006, the Indian population in Victoria has more than doubled to make our great state home to the largest Indian population in Australia. There is growing demand for services between Melbourne and India and this new daily service will deliver more choice and flexibility to Victorians.”
He continued: “We were also thrilled to welcome the very first 787 Dreamliner to Melbourne. With components of the 787 partly manufactured here, Melbourne is proudly the home of the Dreamliner in Australia and we look forward to welcoming more 787s to Melbourne.”