Aviation News

Air India adds much-requested Mumbai-Pune flights

Air India has added flights on the much-requested Mumbai-Pune route in the upcoming summer schedule. Let’s dive into the details.


Starting 26th March 2023, Air India will operate a daily flight between Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport and Pune International Airport, thus connecting two of Maharashtra’s biggest cities. The flights will operate with the below mentioned timings:

  • Mumbai-Pune
  • Departure time: 09:45
  • Arrival time: 10:45
  • Flight time: 1 hour
  • Flight number: AI613
  • Frequency: Daily
  • Pune-Mumbai
  • Departure time: 11:20
  • Arrival time: 12:20
  • Flight time: 1 hour
  • Flight number: AI614
  • Frequency: Daily

Flights will be operated by Airbus A319s featuring 8 Business Class seats and 114 standard Economy Class seats.

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Much-requested route

Mumbai-Pune is one of the most requested routes in India. This daily connection will particularly be beneficial for those residing in Pune.

Pune is the second largest city of Maharashtra after Mumbai. The city is considered as a IT hub of India with multiple small and large businesses having offices and manufacturing sites in Pune.

The city is a busy business hub but lacks international connectivity due to its constrained airport facilities. Pune International Airport is a civil enclave with the runway being shared with Indian Air Force. The flight movements are controlled by the Indian Air Force, resulting in no scope of expansion. Also, there is a serious space constraint for expansion, even if the Air Force allowed more flights.

The city currently has two international flights: a 4-weekly flight to Singapore by Vistara and a daily flight to Dubai by SpiceJet. The new Pune-Mumbai flight opens up new opportunities for Air India, a market which has not been taped by any airline to its full potential yet.

In the past, Jet Airways and Indian Airlines used to operate flights between Mumbai and Pune but they had been discontinued due to unknown reasons.

This new route is great, but are the timings of the flight the most optimum?

Not the best timings

The morning flights are not the best for onward connections from Mumbai, particularly the international ones.

Those connecting to London Heathrow from Mumbai will have an easy connection, with time spent on ground in Mumbai being only 1 hour and 40 minutes. But far off destinations like New York JFK and Newark have a connecting time of 13 or 14 hours in Mumbai, not the most ideal connection. In the past, Jet Airways used to have a night flight from Pune to Mumbai, enabling onward connections to Europe and London.

Air India seems to be targeting Origin & Destination (O&D) traffic rather than connecting traffic. I don’t know how Air India will work out this route but it will certainly be interesting to keep a track of this route.

Meanwhile, Air India recently announced that it will boost service to Bangkok, Hong Kong and Seoul in the upcoming summer schedule.

Featured image by JetPhotos

What do you think of Air India starting Mumbai-Pune flights? Let me know in the comments section below.

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