Category Archives: Aviation

Agra Airport to get a new civilian terminal

A new civilian terminal is expected to come up at the Kheria Air Force Station in Agra to provide international facilities to passengers visiting the Taj city, revealed Mahesh Sharma, Tourism Minister, Government of India. The Kheria airport is currently under the control of Indian Air Force which allows one of its air strips to be used for civilian flights. Post discussions with the district officials, Sharma informed, Rs. 100 crore has already been sanctioned for upgrading the Kheria airport and construction of the civilian terminal, for which about 50 acres of land has already been acquired. Sharma further informed that the proposed Jewar International Airport in Gautam Buddha Nagar is expected to cater to the aviation needs of the national capital region (NCR), while the Agra airport will primarily cater to the tourists visiting the Taj Mahal. (Source: Business Standard)  

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Vistara launches suite of ancillary products and services

Vistara has announced the launch of a suite of ancillary products and services including electronic coupon books, class upgrades, lounge pass, excess baggage. All of these products and services can be purchased online during the booking process, or added post-booking through the ‘Manage My Booking’ function. Customers who provide their email addresses or mobile phone numbers at the time of booking will also receive an email or SMS with a ‘hot link’ prior to their flight to enable them to directly access their booking and purchase the ancillary products of their choice. Commenting on the launch, Sanjiv Kapoor, Chief Strategy and Commercial Officer, Vistara, said “We are pleased to launch this suite of ancillary products and services that are designed to offer customers more choices at attractive rates, and that can be purchased with the click of a button. This is the first wave of several more ancillary products and services that are in the pipeline, to be launched in the coming weeks to offer customers even more options to enhance their experience as they Fly the New Feeling.”

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Govt. approves land for Cargo centre at Guwahati airport

The Union Cabinet has approved leasing out of Airports Authority of India (AAI) land measuring 4050 sq. mtrs. to Assam Industrial Development Corporation for Centre for Perishable Cargo at Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport, Guwahati. This will be utilised for setting up of Centre for Perishable Cargo (CPC) and its future expansion at Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport (LGBI Airport), Guwahati. The land is to be leased by AAI on a token licence fee of Rs.1/- per annum for a period of seven years subject to signing of Lease Agreement. After expiry of initial period of seven years, the future lease period will be made afresh as per AAI policy in-vogue. North Eastern Region (NER) in India is rich in flora and fauna. Revenue from export of agriculture and horticulture items will improve economic conditions of NER. There is a need for promotions of perishable cargo export from this region, which will generate employment opportunities directly or indirectly. Facilities for air upliftment of perishable cargo from Guwahati are required to be more effective. Therefore, it has been decided to lease land measuring 4050 sq. Mtrs. to AIDC, by AAI for setting up of CPC and its future expansion at LGBI Airport, Guwahati.

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GMR to develop and run new airport at North Goa

GMR Airports, the company that runs Delhi and Hyderabad airports, has won the bid to develop and operate a new airport in North Goa. “GMR Airports, a subsidiary of GMR Infrastructure has won the international competitive bid for development and operation of Mopa Greenfield Airport in North Goa,” as per BSE release. The company is going to built this airport on BOT (Build Operate Transfer) model and the concession period for the said project will be 40 years with a possible extension of another 20 years through a bid process. The letter of award is expected to be issued within 60 days, while signing of concession agreement will be done within 45 days from the date of issuance of award letter.

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Air India Express adds more routes to Sharjah

Air India Express will connect Sharjah with Chandigarh and Tiruchirapalli (in Tamil Nadu) from September. The airline will introduce three non-stop flights per week each from Chandigarh (IXC) and Tiruchirapalli (TRZ), to add Sharjah International Airport, bringing the total number of its routes between Sharjah and Indian destinations up to seven. India is one of the United Arab Emirates’ leading trade partners, accounting for some 9.8 percent of the country’s total non-oil trade, buying 14.9 percent of the Emirates’ exports and 8.7 percent of its re-exports. The total volume of bilateral trade between India and the UAE is expected to increase from $60 billion in 2014 to $100 billion by the year 2020. India is also the largest single origin of investors for Sharjah’s Hamriyah Free Zone and Sharjah International Airport Free Zone (SAIF Zone). Air India Express has been expanding its services to destinations in the UAE, including daily Mumbai-Dubai, Mumbai-Sharjah, New Delhi-Dubai and New Delhi-Abu Dhabi routes, which it added earlier this year. According to the airline, the number of its weekly flights between India and the UAE increased from 107 flights to 146 flights per week before the summer. The low-cost airline currently operates five routes with a total of 15 weekly flights to Sharjah International Airport. Air India Express now flies direct to Sharjah from Kochi (COK), Kozhikode (CCJ), Mumbai (SAHAR), New Delhi (DEL), Thiruvananthapuram (TRV) and Varanasi (VNS. India is well connected to Sharjah, with Sharjah-headquartered Air Arabia operating flights between Sharjah and 13 Indian destinations. Jet Airways, India’s second largest airline, operates direct daily flights on Sharjah-Kochi and Sharjah-Mangaluru (IXE) routes.

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Now, heli tourism in Vizag

The Visakhapatnam Urban Development Authority (VUDA) and Sky Chopper Logistics signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to introduce helicopter tourism in the city from Dasara festival this year. Ganta Srinivasa Rao, HRD Minister of State, Government of Andhra Pradesh, informed that the company would be allotted 1.95 acres at VUDA park for construction of helipad and three rooms to operate the services on payment of Rs. 50,000 a month to the VUDA. There are two packages on offer which will cover Kailasagiri to Bheemunipatnam and another will cover the areas of Araku and Lammasingi. The fares will also be announced soon. The passengers will get an insurance cover of Rs. 10 lakh. (Source: The Hindu)

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IndiGo introduces ‘Flexible Fare’ and ‘Lite Fare’

IndiGo has launched ‘Flexible Fare’ that allows travelers to change to another flight at no extra charge. With the regular fare, this change costs Rs 2250 per person per sector. Additionally, Flexible Fare offers them complimentary seat selection. IndiGo’s Super Lightweight Champion gives corporate travellers, who frequently make daily round trips with no check-in baggage, significantly lower fares that can be selected on bookings made at least 15 days before the date of travel. In case the traveller does land up having check-in baggage of up to 15 kgs, they can pay a fee of Rs 200 at the airport. Speaking about this initiative, Mr. Aditya Ghosh, President, IndiGo said, “These are exciting times for the flyers in India. It is our constant endeavour to empower our consumers to make informed choices. These new fares are a testament to our promise to always provide our flyers with low fares. We complete ten years of operation this year and the reason we have grown is that we have always been ahead of the curve. Initiatives such as this go a long way in strengthening our consumers’ trust in us and we hope we can continue to provide them with a hassle-free flying experience.”

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MoCA signs MoU with Maharashtra and AAI on Regional Connectivity

The Union Ministry of Civil Aviation, Maharashtra Government, and Airports Authority of India have signed a tri-partite Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), kicking off the collaborative process for the successful launch of the Regional Connectivity Scheme. The MoU was signed in Mumbai in the presence of Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju, and Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis. With this MoU, the State Government of Maharashtra has formally agreed to provide the concessions required from the State Governments in the Regional Connectivity Scheme, thereby becoming the first state in the country to do so. The agreement was signed by Chairman, Airports Authority of India, Principal Secretary Civil Aviation (Maharashtra) and Joint Secretary (Ministry of Civil Aviation). Earlier during the day, Raju and Fadnavis discussed various other aviation related issues in the State of Maharashtra at length. The meeting was attended by R. N. Choubey, Secretary, Ministry of Civil Aviation, Swadheen Kshatriya, Chief Secretary of the State and other officials. Amongst others, the subject of rehabilitation of slums (that have come up right next to the Mumbai International Airport) was deliberated upon in details.  Early operationlisation of several available airports and airstrips in the State (like Shirdi, Kolhapur, Nasik, Sholapur etc) also figured prominently in the discussions. Later, Raju undertook an aerial survey of the proposed airport site for Navi Mumbai and took a status briefing from the officers concerned. He laid emphasis on timely completion of the project and conveyed that this can be achieved only if timelines for all sub-activities are adhered to. Raju conveyed that he will be undertaking similar visits to several other states across the country to promote the Regional Connectivity Scheme and discuss other related issues …

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Cathay, Dragonair up baggage allowance by 10kg

Cathay Pacific Airways and its subsidiary Dragonair have revised their baggage policies and will now be offering customers an additional 10kg of check-in baggage. The new policy will be valid starting September 15, 2016, and will be available to all passengers, whether they are travelling economy, business or first class. But, the revised checked baggage policy will have a limitation on pieces of baggage. Economy, premium economy and business class passengers will be able to check-in up to two pieces of luggage, while those in first class will be entitled to a maximum of three bags. On the other hand, Marco Polo Club silver, gold and diamond tier members would get an extra 10kg, 15kg and 20kg, respectively. Meanwhile, Dragonair has also revealed that it will increase its carry-on baggage allowance to match that of Cathay Pacific. From a set 5kg for all classes, the new allowance will grant economy and premium economy passengers a new limit of 7kg, while business and first passengers will receive 10kg and 15kg respectively.

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Delhi-Leh route in demand in June

A 1.92 per cent seats were sold on the Delhi-Leh route on Jet Airways earning a revenue share of 6.18 per cent in the highest fare bucket on select 20 sectors, as per data from the Ministry of Civil Aviation. Passengers carried by domestic airlines during Jan-Jul 2016 were 560.87 lakhs as against 455.95 lakhs during the corresponding period of previous year thereby registering a growth of 23.01 per cent. In July, SpiceJet recorded the highest passenger load factor (PLF) with 92 per cent, followed by GoAir with 90.3 per cent and AirAsia with 85.7 per cent.

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