Air India’s first non-stop service between San Francisco and Bengaluru will start today. The flight will connect two global tech hubs – the original Silicon Valley and the Silicon Valley of India. It will leave San Francisco at 2030 hrs (local time) on January 9 and arrive at Bengaluru at 0345 hrs (local time) on January 11.
The flight, AI 176, from San Francisco to Bengaluru will operate on Saturdays and Tuesdays.It will operate with a Boeing 777-200LR aircraft VT ALG and have a seating capacity of 238 passengers, including eight first class, 35 business class,195 economy class configuration, besides four cockpit and 12 cabin crew. The flight will be operated by an-all women cockpit crew of Captain Zoya Aggarwal (P1), Captain Papagari Thanmai (P1), Captain Akansha Sonaware (P2) and Captain Shivani Manhas (P2).
Captain Zoya Aggarwal is an accomplished pilot with a flying experience of more than 8,000 flying hours. She has command experience in a B-777 aircraft of more than 10 years and more than 2,500 flying hours. The distance between Bengaluru and San Francisco is approximately 13,993 kms and the two cities are located at diametrically opposite ends of the world with a time zone change of approximately 13.5 hours.
The total flight time on this route will be of more than 17 hours, depending on the wind speed.
The route for this flight will reportedly be the safest, fastest and most economical. It will be an around-the-world flight and based on the wind speed and other logistical parameters, the polar route may be chosen as the flight path, which will result in savings on flying time, fuel consumption and curbing carbon footprint. This will be the longest commercial flight in the world to be operated by Air India or any other airline in India.