No flights will take-off and land from the Mumbai airport for five hours on March 17, the fourth consecutive Saturday, as both runways will be closed for augmentation work.
Initially, both runways were to be shut between 11:30am and 4:30pm for three Saturdays starting from February 25. “The runway closures were always scheduled on four Saturdays,” said a Mumbai International Airport Limited (MIAL) spokesperson.
However, sources in the air traffic control (ATC) told HT that the work was extended up to March 17.
Nearly 90 flights are curtailed from the airports routine arrivals and departures on Saturdays owing to the work. As a result, people planning to travel in and out of the city over the weekend are spending more.
For instance, the cheapest one-way economy class ticket from Mumbai to Delhi, on March 17, was priced at Rs6,500. “Normally the one-way fare is Rs2,000 or less,” said a Fort-based travel agent.
MIAL has been using the closure period to install taxiway lights on a stretch where the runways intersect.