11 flights cancelled from Chandigarh airport as runaway repair hits operations
Connectivity to Delhi and Mumbai has also been hit, and travellers will have to plan their itinerary before 4pm.punjab Updated: Sep 24, 2017 13:28 IST
Air traffic at the Chandigarh International Airport is set to drop substantially from next month due to runway repair. As many as 11 of the 36 flights operating from the airport have been cancelled to meet the new closure time of 4pm from October 3.
The airport is currently operating till 10pm.
The revised schedule will remain in force till March 31 next year, and there are chances of further extension, as the repair works are targeted to be completed in 20 months.
The airport will also remain closed on Sundays during this period.
As a result, Chandigarh-bound air travellers will be left with limited options, as already visible in the working schedule of various airlines.
For instance, SpiceJet that currently operates seven flights has cancelled four of them. These include the direct flight to Hyderabad at 8:50pm, Jammu flight at 6:10pm, and Delhi flight at 8:25pm.
SpiceJet had to cancel its morning flight (8:30am) to Jammu as well as the same aircraft was used for the Jaipur sector.
A local official of the airline told HT the airline had deployed a single aircraft from Jammu to Jaipur via Chandigarh. After the withdrawal of the Chandigarh-Jaipur flight, it was difficult to operate the Jammu flight alone.
“It will definitely lead to loss in business besides connectivity issues from the airport, but the runway repairs are also important,” he said. “Hopefully the air traffic will grow manifold once the airport is modernised.”
Evening connectivity to Delhi affected
The city’s evening connectivity with Delhi has also suffered as Jet Airway’s has cancelled its three flights to the national capital at 6:05pm, 7:35pm and 9:35pm.
Indigo has also called off its important flights to Bengaluru, Srinagar and Mumbai.
Firm manager Varun Sanger said the cancellation of the Chandigarh-Bengaluru flight at 4:30pm affected the Srinagar flight, as they had a single aircraft on this route. Also, the Mumbai flight could not be advanced due to tight time slots before 4pm, he said.
Air India has already released its revised timings as reported by Hindustan Times a few days ago. Go Air’s Chandigarh-Mumbai flight at 7:15 pm has also been cancelled. There has been no change in the schedule of other airlines, including Air Asia and Air Vistara.
As many as 11 of the 36 flights operating from the airport have been cancelled to meet the new closing time of 4pm from October 3. Restrictions to remain till March 31, 2018.
Here is the list of cancelled flights:
Limited options left
If anyone wants to travel to Jammu by air, the option is gone. SpiceJet used to operate the only flight to Jammu, which stands cancelled from next month.
SpiceJet’s Srinagar flight at 12:35 pm is the only flight connecting Chandigarh to the northern state with cancellation of Indigo’s flight at 1:35 pm.
Now, there is a single flight to Hyderabad at 2:15pm, as SpiceJet’s late evening flight to the IT hub has been called off.
Connectivity to Delhi and Mumbai has also been hit, and travellers will have to plan their itinerary before 4pm.
Revised schedule on Tuesday
A senior official at the airport said the revised schedule will be released on Tuesday, as they are in the process of compiling it. He said a review of the new closure time is not expected before February next year.