The much-delayed new domestic departure terminal 1D of Delhi airport will finally open on April 15.
The new terminal has almost double the space compared to the 70-year-old terminal 1B and double the number of entrances, security channels and check-in counters.
Passengers, however, should expect confusion at the domestic airport because airlines will shift to the new terminal in phases and four airlines — Air India (domestic), Go Air, MDLR Airlines and Jagson Airlines will operate from terminal 1A.
“During the first month, there will be issues and minor hiccups but we have to ensure that there are no major problems,” said B.S. Shantharaju, CEO of airport operator Delhi International Airport Ltd. (DIAL).
To ensure the smooth and seamless shifting of operations from 1B to 1D, DIAL is taking the help of a team of experts from Munich airport to implement the ORAT (Operational Readiness and Airport Transfer) programme.
Jet Airways and JetLite would shift in the first phase between April 15 and April 26. Shantaraju said extensive trials of all systems and processes have been conducted so there are minimal problems when the terminal opens.
“More than 30 trial sessions were carried out at terminal 1D over four months. Staff from all areas of operations have been exposed to the new working environment, baggage handling, IT systems and processes required for day-to-day operations,” he said.
The new terminal offers many facilities not available at the airport at present. The security hold area would offer retail shops and eateries and passengers can enjoy movies at the entertainment zone or surf the net thanks to Wi-fi connectivity. There would also be a separate smokers’ room.