Huge Billboards Cause Air India to Cut 51 Seats from their BOM-EWR B777-300ER

Only in India…gigantic billboards are forcing Air India to not sell 51 seats on their B777-300ERs operating the BOM-EWR route. Bloomberg reports that huge billboards are forcing departures from BOM to climb rapidly on takeoff, but the 15-hour flight to EWR would be too heavy to clear the billboard with its full load of passengers and fuel.

As a result, Air India now leaves 51 passengers off the 777-300ER. Flying 15 percent under capacity means losing 100 million rupees ($1.6 million) per month on the route, an Indian aviation minister told legislators on Monday, according to my Bloomberg News colleague, Anurag Kotoky. Airport officials at Chhatrapati Shivaji International have so far removed 13 of the 15 offending billboards in flight paths.

India Billboards

Photograph by Dhiraj Singh

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      • @Gene – according to Bloomberg they don’t – United Airlines (UAL) uses a smaller 777-200 for the same route and has not experienced similar problems on departures, a spokeswoman told Bloomberg News.

  1. I would think the airlines could afford to buy the billboards and take them down with a big ROI from lost seat revenue.

  2. This looks such an improbable story. I mean, if AI was so good that it could calculate “wait if I drop 51 seats I can climb 200ft per sec more than I would normally”…oh come on…that’s attributing too much intelligence and capability to Air India.

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