Category Archives: Aviation

Port Blair becomes an international airport

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Foreign tourists can now directly fly to the Andaman and Nicobar Islands as the government has designated Port Blair airport as an authorised immigration check post for entry into and exit from India with valid travel documents. The decision came more than a month after the killing of an American national by members of a highly protected tribe in one of the islands of the Union Territory. “In pursuance of sub-rule (b) of rule 3 of the Passport (Entry into India) Rules, 1950, the central government hereby designates Port Blair airport of Union territory of Andaman and Nicobar Islands as an authorised immigration check post for entry into/exit from India with valid travel documents for all classes of passengers,” a home ministry notification said. In another notification, the home ministry appointed the Superintendent of Police, CID, the Andaman and Nicobar Police, as the “civil authority” for the immigration check post at Port Blair airport with effect from December 31, 2018. The Andamans, under global spotlight after the killing of an American national, has emerged as one of the most sought-after tourist destinations in the country receiving on an average four lakh tourists, including several thousand foreigners, annually. According to data available with the home ministry, the archipelago has received 4,02,393 tourists, including 11,818 foreigners, till October, 2018 while it received 4,87,229 tourists, including 15,310 foreigners in 2017. In 2016, as many as 4,00,019 tourists, including 15,467 foreigners, had visited the Andamans and in 2015, a total of 3,11,358 tourists, including 14,674 foreigners, had gone to the union territory, the data revealed. Source: PTI

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SpiceJet begins direct flight between Kolkata and Lilabari in Assam under UDAN scheme

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SpiceJet has announced a daily direct flight on the Kolkata-Lilabari route under the regional connectivity scheme, UDAN. Reiterating its focus on regional connectivity, the airline also announced a new direct flight connecting Kolkata with Jabalpur and an additional frequency on Hyderabad-Jabalpur route. All new flights and frequencies are scheduled to commence from January 15. According to a statement released by the airline, “SpiceJet is celebrating the launch by announcing an introductory promotional fare starting at Rs 3,700 on Kolkata-Lilabari and Lilabari-Kolkata routes, Rs 3,969 on Kolkata-Jabalpur and Rs 3,949 on Jabalpur-Kolkata, routes.” The primary objective of (UDAN) scheme is to connect small cities of the country at affordable fares. Shilpa Bhatia, Chief Sales and Revenue Officer, SpiceJet, said, “Lilabari is our first destination in Assam under the UDAN scheme and we are confident that the new flight will provide impetus to the tourism potential of the state.”

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NokScoot launches 4-times-a-week Delhi-Bangkok direct

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Thailand-based NokScoot has launched its non-stop flight from New Delhi to Bangkok at inaugural fare of Rs 7200 one way (inclusive of taxes). It is a joint venture between Scoot, which is 100 per cent owned by Singapore Airlines and Thailand’s Nok Air. Giam Ming Toh, Deputy CEO, NokScoot; HE ChutintornGongsakdi, Ambassdor of Thailand to India and IsraStapanaseth, Director, Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), addressed the media and shared how the new airline would offer new connection to Bangkok at very competitive fares.

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IndiGo to connect Kannur to Chennai, Hyderabad, Bengaluru & Hubli from January 2019

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IndiGo is all set to operate daily direct flights connecting Kannur to Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Hubli and Chennai with effect from January 2019. The introduction of these flights will further strengthen the airline’s operations andwill provide connectivity between Kannur and other key cities with all-inclusive fares starting from Rs 1799. William Boulter, Chief Commercial Officer, IndiGo, said, “We are pleased to have the opportunity to fly out of the new airport in Kannur starting January 2019. Kannur will be the 67th destination on our growing network and starting operations will further strengthen the air connectivity from Northern Kerala. IndiGo will operate daily non-stop return flights from Kannur to Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Chennai and Hubli. These new services will benefit our customers with more flying options and will also boost tourism stemming from nearby regional destinations, including Kasaragod and Wayanad in Kerala, and Coorg in Karnataka.”

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Priority Pass introduces 800+ offers for its members

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Priority Pass, the airport experiences program, has introduced offers, which give members access to discounts at airports across the world through its app and website. In addition to accessing world-renowned lounges and dining options, members can now enrich their pre-flight experience through specially negotiated offers at hundreds of dining, spa, retail and airport services.   This launch comes in response to consumers’ increased desire for more meaningful experiences and rewards at the airport and is in line with Priority Pass’ strategy to add greater value to Members right across the airport ecosystem. According to Collinson research, travellers would arrive earlier to the airport if they received discounts on food and beverage (41%) and shopping (39%), with almost half (47%) stating they’d spend more if they received deals in advance of traveling.   The launch of offers gives all Priority Pass Members access to over 800 discounts, upgrades and free gifts with certain purchases, in 146 airports across 32 countries in the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, India and Asia Pacific, with plans to add more in the coming months. Priority Pass has worked with merchants in all of these airports to craft special offers which bring benefits for Priority Pass Members while also helping drive additional footfall for airport partners, which include Spa Express by Heaven on Earth, O2 Spa, as well as Porsche Design Boutique in India. Further afield, partners include Duty Free Americas, InMotion Entertainment and many more.   All Members can access offers directly from the Priority Pass app on their mobile devices or via the website. The process couldn’t be easier: all they need to do is simply log in and search for their departure / …

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Air India Express launches new route from Kannur to Abu Dhabi

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Air India Express has launched its inaugural flight from Kannur International Airport in Kerala, India, to Abu Dhabi International Airport (AUH). With this, it commences three weekly flights connecting the two airports. The three weekly non-stop flights from Kannur will arrive at AUH at 11:30am and depart at 12:30pm on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays. Speaking after the inauguration, Maarten De Groof, Chief Commercial Officer, Abu Dhabi Airports, said, “We are excited to be Air India Express’ first choice for their inaugural route. India has been one of our top generators of traffic, and we are always eager to expand the airport’s connectivity to this region in response to our passengers’ needs.” The carrier provides convenient connectivity to short/medium-haul international routes in the Gulf and South East Asia at affordable fares. PA Umadevi, Airport Manager, Air India Express, said, “We are excited to bring our inaugural flight to the UAE’s capital Abu Dhabi. This new destination will attract the traffic not only from the northern side of Kerala, but also from the neighbouring states of Karnataka as the airport is located at the northern part of the state and has easy access to Mysore and other states of Karnataka. Abu Dhabi Airports has provided us all support, as always, to ensure our customers’ satisfaction and meet the rising demand in the Abu Dhabi market.”

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1st Global Aviation Summit to be held in Mumbai from January 15-16, 2019

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In its endeavour to recognise the fast growth of the aviation sector, the Ministry of Civil Aviation and the Airports Authority of India in collaboration with the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FICCI), has announced the Global Aviation Summit, with an overarching theme of ‘Flying for all – especially for the next 6 billion’. Supported by ICAO, IATA, ACI and CANSO, the Summit will be held on January 15 and 16, 2019 at The Grand Hyatt in Mumbai. It aims to focus on the celebration of ‘Flying for All’ and to provide a platform to the aviation fraternity to highlight the challenges of the sector in the newly-developing growth spots. The Summit provides a platform to the stakeholders to brainstorm over the future of the aviation industry and identify the growth areas. Speaking at the announcement of the Global Aviation Summit, Suresh Prabhu, Minister of Civil Aviation and Commerce & Industry said, “The reason behind hosting the Global Aviation Summit here is because India is one of the fastest-growing aviation markets in the world. This Summit will provide a platform to the global aviation fraternity to display the challenges of the sector in the newly-developing growth spots and understand how technology-driven innovation will shape the air travel industry in India.” More than 1,000 delegates, 80 plus speakers, 50 plus CEOs of airports and airlines, 30 plus exhibitors, transport ministers from 35 countries and 35 regulators (DGCAs/Civil aviation authorities from different countries) from the global aviation fraternity are going to participate.

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Jet Airways introduces 18 new flights on select domestic and international routes

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Beginning December 2018, Jet Airways will introduce 18 additional flights on select destinations such as Bangkok, Kathmandu and Singapore in ASEAN as well as Doha and Dubai in the Gulf. Further, it will soon add a third daily frequency to Bangkok and Singapore each from Delhi and a third daily service to Singapore from Mumbai. Additional frequencies will also be introduced to the Gulf, strengthening the airline’s status as one of the largest carriers to/ from the region. December will see the introduction of second daily services connecting Mumbai and Delhi with Doha respectively. The addition of a seventh daily frequency between Mumbai and Dubai will also make Jet Airways the only airline to offer unparalleled 24-hour connectivity to the Gulf’s favourite destination with maximum number of daily services. Apart from it, the carrier will offer a fourth daily frequency between Delhi and Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal. Jet Airways also continues to augment its domestic connectivity at these hubs, and will increase operations between Mumbai and Amritsar to daily frequencies, and add a fourth daily frequency on the Delhi-Amritsar route in December. These steps are in addition to new services already introduced at the beginning of winter schedule, including new flights on the Delhi & Bangalore-Vadodara routes, increased frequencies in the Mumbai-Guwahati and Mumbai-Patna markets and an enhancement of capacity from ATR to 737 operations on the Delhi-Jodhpur route. Raj Sivakumar, Senior Vice President – Worldwide Sales & Distribution, Jet Airways, said, “The strategy will enable Jet Airways to offer extensive connectivity via Mumbai to most of its network in south and west India. Similarly, new services to Delhi will offer seamless connectivity to the north and east of …

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GoAir to connect Bengaluru to Phuket and Male from December 9

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GoAir is set to further expand its international footmark with the launch of direct flights on the Bengaluru-Phuket and Bengaluru-Male routes effective December 9, 2018. The airline recently announced its direct services to Phuket and Male from Delhi and Mumbai. GoAir will operate three direct flight services per week between Bengaluru and Phuket at an attractive return fare starting from Rs 16,999 (all inclusive); two direct flight services per week between Bengaluru and Male at an attractive return fare starting from Rs 15,199 (all inclusive). The flight schedules are designed to provide flexibility of choice, passenger convenience, and customised travel options. GoAir also provides GoHoliday packages, whereby customers can choose from 3/4/5/7 holiday options to both Phuket and Male. The addition of this new connectivity will bolster GoAir’s offering between Bengaluru-Phuket and Bengaluru-Male. It will further strengthen the airline’s growing international network and significantly enhance connectivity for passengers. The sector has been introduced in response to the growing demand from leisure travellers from Bengaluru.

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Istanbul New Airport opens; aims to welcome 200 mn passengers annually

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Turkish Airlines welcomes a new era of Turkish aviation with the opening of Istanbul New Airport. The world’s largest international hub will be home to Turkey’s national flag carrier and establish Istanbul’s place as the centre of the globe for aviation and travel. Upon final completion, the airport will welcome 200 million passengers per year. Coinciding with the 95th anniversary of the founding of the Republic of Turkey, the Istanbul New Airport was officially opened by Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, President, Republic of Turkey. Passengers on the first Turkish Airlines flights to the new airport that was specially operated for the opening ceremony received souvenir tickets. Following the official opening of the new airport on October 29, 2018, Turkish Airlines is operating a limited number of domestic and international routes from there, while all operations and existing flight schedules will run as usual from Istanbul Atatürk Airport. Additional flights will be operated from Istanbul New Airport to Ankara, Antalya, Izmir, Azerbaijan (Baku), and TRNC (Ercan) until December 30. Pursuant to existing planning, on December 31, all operations will move from Istanbul Atatürk Airport, after which, all flights will operate from Istanbul New Airport. The mega project will be launched in four phases with the final phase set to be complete in 2028. The complex will boast of six runways, four terminals, and 233 aircraft parking positions, with a capacity to serve up to 200 million passengers a year with 500-plus check-in desks and 225,000 employees. Upon completion of the final phase, the largest international flight hub will incorporate offices, residences, hotels, a health centre, culture and art buildings, a shopping mall, designer outlets, an expo convention centre, and meeting and training …

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