National carrier Air India has launched a new personalised meal service for its first- and business-class passengers on select international flights from New Delhi.
'Order to Chef', the new service, which has been launched in association with the airline's in-flight catering partners TajSats and Sky Gourmet, lends a personalised touch to the selection and ordering of menu by first and business class passengers, Air India said in a release today.
Currently available for passengers of the daily Delhi-Chicago and Delhi-New York flights and three daily Delhi-London flights, Air India plans to extend the new service to other international flights shortly, it said.
The airline offers two major meals and one high-tea on the Delhi-Chicago and Delhi-New York sector, whereas passengers onboard the Delhi-London sector relish one major meal and snacks, the release said.
The government-owned airline's in-flight menu offers an assortment of the best of Indian cuisine, a wide variety of continental and seafood recipes.
According to Air India, a dedicated 'Order to Chef' cell has been set up in Delhi and an Air India team reaches out to these passengers before the flight to seek their meal preference from the existing menus.
The desired choice of meal is then ordered in advance, for the premium class passenger, it said.
Air India has tweaked hiring norms after a number of
pilots quit the carrier and moved to private airlines after acquiring high high-cost type-rated training at its expenses, the source said.
"The new pilots joining Air India will have to sign a bond and submit bank guarantee totalling Rs one crore, which will be encashed if a pilot decides to quit the airline before the expiry of his contract," the source said.
As many as 173 Air India pilots have resigned from the national carrier since 2012, with the maximum being those operating the narrow body Airbus A320 family aircraft, Government had said in Parliament recently.
Of these, 72 pilots operating the narrow-body Airbus A320 family fleet have resigned, while 38 pilots each of Boeing 787 Dreamliner and Boeing 777, eight of Boeing 747 and 17 of Boeing 737 fleet have quit between 2012 and October this year, Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju had said during the Winter session of Parliament.
At present, the cost of training a pilot for an Airbus family of planes stands at Rs 4.01 lakh per pilot while the type rating cost per pilot comes to nearly Rs 23 lakh.