Elegance, Luxury, Style 'Made of Italy' Alitalia arrives in Delhi
By Deepak Arora
NEW DELHI, Oct 30: Alitalia, which is associated with Italian elegance, luxury, style, comfort, fine dining with Ferrari Trento sparkling wines and Lavazza coffee and wifi, has relaunched flights to New Delhi. The inaugural flight, which coincided with the visit of the Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni's visit to India, arrived from Rome to Delhi in wee hours of Sunday/ Monday night, according to Fabio Lazzerini, Alitalia Chief Commercial Officer.
The first flight from Rome took off on October 29, while the inaugural flight from Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi took off on October 30.
A beaming Fabio Lazzerini said the decision to launch this new service between Delhi and Rome was taken to meet the increasing demand for flights between the two countries. Italy, in fact, is the second European country, after Great Britain, for arrivals from India. In 2015 over 426,000 travelers from India arrived in Italy, recording a growth of 49.7% versus the previous year.
At the media interaction, Fabio Lazzerini was accompanied by Silvio Ciprietti, Regional General Manager (Middle East, Africa and India); Paolo Guidi, Country Manager India and Federico Garimberti, Head of Media Relations.
He said the new Alitalia’s direct flight is also an important opportunity to strengthen trade relations between India and Italy. With an exchange of 7.5 billion euros in 2016, Italy is the fifth economic partner of India among the EU countries and those data have great potential for growth.
Fabio Lazzerini said as soon as the the passengers enter Alitalia's Airbus A330, they would get a feel of as if they have already arrived in Italy. The aircraft is equipped with exclusive Made in Italy amenities and completely refurbished cabin interiors to reflect Italian elegance and style.
‘Magnifica’ business class guests can relax in luxurious Italian brand Poltrona Frau leather seats that fully recline to a comfortable flatbed position, and enjoy award-winning onboard dining featuring the best of Italian regional fine dining menu which has won the prestigious “Best Airline Cuisine” award from the American magazine "Global Traveler”.
He said the onboard menu features the best of Italian regional food accompanied by wines from the country’s best estates and the “Ferrari Trento DOC” sparkling wines. Alitalia’s new 'dine anytime' meal service allows customers to decide when they prefer to eat.
After their meal, business class passengers will also have the chance to choose from a special coffee menu, offering three different blends of espresso selected for Alitalia by the famous Italian brand Lavazza.
Furthermore, all classes feature onboard Wi-Fi connectivity for phone calls, Internet and e-mail.
Alitalia flight from Delhi departs at 4.20 am and arrives in Rome at 8.40 am. From Rome it departs at 2.40 pm and arrives Delhi the next day at 2.30 early morning.
Passengers departing from Delhi, upon arriving at Rome Fiumicino airport will benefit from easy connections to 39 cities in Italy, Europe, North Africa and the Americas served by Alitalia including cultural capitals (such as Florence, Pisa, Venice, Paris) and many more (such as four US destinations, New York, Boston, Los Angeles and Miami, as well as Havana and Sao Paulo).
Passengers from Delhi with connections to other cities will have a Transit Team to assist them and ensure they reach their next departure gate on time.
The departure schedule of the flight from Rome is ideal for Alitalia passengers to connect to many other cities across India, such as Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Jaipur and Bangalore thanks to special agreements between Alitalia and Jet Airways, as well as with other major Indian airlines.
Members of Alitalia's MilleMiglia loyalty programme can earn and redeem miles on the new service.
The decision to launch this new service between Delhi and Rome was taken to meet the
increasing demand for flights between the two countries: Italy, in fact, is the second European country, after Great Britain, for arrivals from India. In 2015 over 426,000 travelers from India arrived in Italy, recording a growth of 49.7% versus the previous year.
The new Alitalia’s direct flight is also an important opportunity to strengthen trade relations between India and Italy. With an exchange of 7.5 billion euros in 2016, Italy is the fifth economic partner of India among the EU countries and those data have great potential for growth.
Alitalia is the Italian largest airline. As part of its 2017-2018 winter schedule, Alitalia flies to 74 destinations, including 20 Italian and 54 international destinations, with over 3,300 weekly flights and 97 routes. Alitalia boasts one of the most modern and efficient fleets in the world. The airline is a member of the SkyTeam alliance and is part of the Transatlantic Joint Venture alongside Air
France-KLM and Delta Air Lines.
Alitalia also collaborates with the other Etihad Airways Partners - Air Serbia, Air Seychelles, Etihad Airways and Jet Airways – in order to offer customers more choice through improved networks and schedules, and enhanced frequent flyer benefits.
Since May 2 this year, Alitalia has been operating under Extraordinary Administration. The purpose is to ensure that Alitalia continues to operate at full capacity and to find new investors. The Italian Government appointed three Commissioners to manage the Company: Luigi Gubitosi, Enrico Laghi, Stefano Paleari.
The Government has provided a bridge loan of EUR 900 million (USD 1,058 million). The loan is granted at market interest rates and will be repaid without involving disbursement by Italian tax payers.
The Italian government set the deadline to identify the best offer for the sale of Alitalia by April 30, 2018. The actual transition of activities to prospect buyers, however, will not be finalized before the 4/6-month transitional period necessary to complete authorization procedures (namely Antitrust procedures). This is the reason why the loan has to be repaid by September 30 next year, when the new buyer will have full control over Alitalia activities.
In the meantime, Alitalia is steadily reducing costs and planning its offering. Additionally, economic performance is improving: summer months have registered higher revenues and the airline counts on closing the second half of 2017 with an EBITDA close to break-even.
Alitalia has operated as usual and reliably during summer 2017, to the extent that the Italian Civil Aviation Authority (ENAC) has granted the permanent air carrier operating license.
For the upcoming 2017-2018 winter season, besides the new Delhi-Rome service, Alitalia is going to launch the new long-haul service to the Maldives and has confirmed all long-haul connections inaugurated over the past two years (to Seoul, Santiago de Chile, Mexico City, Beijing and Havana).