Trade and tourism industries across the East of England and London are set to receive a major boost from the launch of a new Air India service in February between London Stansted and Mumbai, India’s economic hub and largest city.

The route will be a first for the airport and comes just three months after the airline launched the only direct flights from a London airport to the northern city of Amritsar from London Stansted in Essex; Air India’s inaugural route from the airport.

The new three-times-a-week service begins on February 21, initially for the winter season and will be operated by a 256-seater Boeing 787 Dreamliner, offering both business and economy class.

We are delighted to hear that London Stansted Airport will now be providing a direct flight to Mumbai. This will undoubtedly bring UK and Indian businesses even closer together. With India investing more in the UK than the rest of the EU combined, and UK India Week going global in 2020, these flights will be a welcome addition to the business community.

David Rooke
Location Services Director
Invest ESSEX

London Stansted Airport’s Expansion

London Stansted Airport has expanded significantly since its purchase by Manchester Airport Group (MAG) in 2013. The airport is reaping the benefits of its surplus runway capacity over airports like London Heathrow and London Gatwick, allowing it to attract further long-haul services, while giving travellers close access to London. Over the last couple of years, direct flights to Dubai, Amritsar and now Mumbai have all begun service, with further long-haul flights expected to be added in the coming years.

London Stansted CEO Ken O’Toole gave an interview to The Times last year in which he hinted at Stansted’s plans to further develop its long-haul networks. Click here to read that article.

With London Stansted sitting in one of the most vibrant, exciting and innovative regions in the UK, it should come as no surprise that Air India has decided to launch this new service to one of the world’s most important economic hubs. This new route is further evidence of the growing demand from businesses and passengers across the region for more long-haul connections from their local airport. As a forward-thinking and innovative airport, we have the ambition and runway capacity to open up even more exciting destinations across Asia, the Middle East and beyond to satisfy rising demand, provide greater choice for consumers and a vital boost to jobs and the local economy over the coming years.

Ken O’Toole
CEO
London Stansted Airport

Generating trade and investment opportunities

The news has been welcomed by businesses and organisations in the region, who say the new link will generate significant trade and investment opportunities. Meanwhile, tourism chiefs expect inbound tourism will increase as the UK is the second most popular European destination for Indian travelers. It will also benefit the 200,000 people from Stansted’s catchment area who currently travel to Mumbai each year from other UK airports.

This latest success for Stansted Airport is a great opportunity for the East of England to capitalise on the world’s second fastest-growing outbound tourism market. India is an untapped country for the region, particularly for the ‘Visiting Friends and Relatives’ segment and visitors looking to explore a different part of England. The more Stansted can develop its global networks, the faster the East of England can grow its share of overseas visitors.

Peter Waters
Executive Director
Visit East of England

Mumbai is India’s key economic powerhouse with a population of nearly 20 million people. It lies on the west coast of the country and is a major port on the Arabian Sea. In 2018 it was rated the 12th richest city in the world and is home to India’s film industry, known by many as Bollywood. Headquarters of several major companies are based in Mumbai including Tata Group, Essel Group, Reliance Industries and Aditya Birla Group.

For more information about London Stansted Airport, click here

Click here to find out more about UK India week.