Oct 19, 2016, 09.00 PM | Source: PTI
Showcasing better seat space and extra baggage allowance, Air India is taking on rival airlines with cheeky advertisements dotted with smiling and sad emojis.
The national carrier, which has turned operationally profitable after a decade, is working on ways to attract more fliers as well as push brand 'Air India' against the backdrop of intense competition and aggressive ticket pricing ways.
Close on the heels of indulging in a bitter war of words with IndiGo over placing of hoardings at the Mumbai airport, Air India today came out with cheeky advertisements that indirectly takes a dig at rivals.
Without naming rivals, the state-owned carrier has made use of happy and sad emojis to convey that its flights provide more seat pitch, complimentary food as well as allow carrying extra baggage.
Generally, an emoji refers to a digital image used to express emotions.
"Today when airfares are almost on par, here's what makes the big difference... Choice is yours," Air India's latest advertisement said along with a tabular presentation of the three aspects spread across three categories.
When contacted, an Air India spokesperson said the national carrier was only "presenting" facts through such advertisements.
"We are only presenting facts and the good side of the airline to the customers," the spokesperson said.
However, an Air India official said that getting aggressive is the demand of time amid cut-throat competition in the domestic airline space.
"The profits and margins are so squeezed in the airline industry that you have to take competition head-on and go for aggressive advertisement and marketing pitch," the official noted.
Against the attributes of 'best seat pitch, 'hot and delicious complimentary food' and 'free baggage allowance' in three separate rows, there is a smiling emoji for Air India while it is a sad emoji under the heading 'other rivals'.
Air India allows up to 35 kilogram baggage for business class travellers and the same is up to 25 kilogram in the case of economy class fliers, as per the advertisement.
Last month, there was a controversy over advertisement involving Air India and IndiGo and the matter was sorted out later.