Every discerning traveller has dreamed of exploring Europe at least once in their lives. While Paris, Rome, Berlin and Amsterdam are crowd pleasers, now it is going to be possible to visit even the most unknown cities in Europe that once seemed far out of reach for Indian travellers. Air India and AcessRail have entered into an intermodal interline agreement to boost connectivity options for guests flying to Europe from India.
This new agreement will let travellers visit small and obscure European cities, some even without airports, on the same air ticket. This positive news for avid travellers comes after the recent rebranding plan of the Tata Group that saw a new logo being introduced.
Passengers, through this initiative, will now be able to take seamless on-ground bus and train connections that will connect them to over 100 cities and towns in The Czech Republic, Hungary, Belgium, Austria, Germany, Italy, and the United Kingdom via multiple European getaways including London Heathrow, London Gatwick, Birmingham, Amsterdam, Vienna and Milan.
Along with the ease of travelling to various small and big cities across Europe on a single intermodal ticket, passengers of Air India, which became a Tata enterprise in January 2022, can also enjoy consistent baggage allowances on these rail or bus operator services, mirroring those offered by Air India on its own flights.
AccesRail, an IATA travel partner with its own designator code (9B), facilitates the realisation of seamless intermodal journeys through a single ticket. Air India's partnership with AccesRail encompasses a broad network of rail and bus operators, including Avanti West Coast (UK), Great Western Railways (UK), London North Eastern Railways (UK), National Express (UK), Trenitalia (Italy), ÖBB Austrian Railways (Austria), SNCB Belgian Railways, and Thalys (Netherlands/Belgium).
Nipun Aggarwal, Chief Commercial and Transformation Officer at Air India said, "The expansion of our global network is one of our key priorities in the ongoing, comprehensive transformation of Air India. This partnership with AccesRail helps us provide our guests easy access to an extended network of destinations across Europe and bridges the gaps in connectivity between India and Europe." He further added, "Augmenting our network with an intermodal approach also underlines our commitment to environmental sustainability."
For now, the intermodal tickets in collaboration with Air India can be conveniently booked via travel agents on a global scale. The airline is also actively planning to progressively extend this feature to its range of sales channels.
Andrew Popescu, Vice President of Business Development at AccesRail, said, "We are excited to launch our Air India-AccesRail cooperation and look forward to continuing with Air India on a global scale with many of our intermodal rail and coach partners. Through this enhanced AccesRail partnership, Air India will be able to offer its customers more destinations and possibilities in a more seamless fashion now and in the future."