The city airport became the first in the country to offer dedicated international operations to private owners after a luxury Gulfstream jet, owned by a European charter company, took off from the airport’s corporate terminal at 10am on Monday.
After waiting for more than a year, private jet owners can skip long check-in and immigration queues at the international terminals to fly abroad.
Though the civil aviation ministry had permitted Mumbai International Airport Limited (MIAL) to operate international charters a year ago, a lack of immigration counters and security holds delayed the service. Private jet owners were upset about the fact that a lack of these facilities made them go all the way to the international terminal from the General Aviation (GA) terminal at Kalina to get their immigration and security clearance. The terminal only catered to private domestic charters until now.
“Being the hub of business and finance, Mumbai is a key destination for non-scheduled operations and private flights.
The commencement of international flight operations from the GA terminal at the airport is a significant step for MIAL in our endeavour to cater to the needs of the growing non-scheduled,” said Sanjay Reddy, managing director, MIAL.
The GA terminal, designed for high fliers, houses exclusive lounges, conference halls, two crew rest rooms and a cafe bar. Apart from the concierge service, passengers are also provided personal travel assistance to the aircraft.
The service has opened at a crucial time considering the fact that the airport witnessed 14,000 private charter movements within India and aboard in the last financial year registering a growth of 8.5 %.