The city airport will get 19 more domestic flight slots daily in the winter owing to increased capacity as a result of the new rapid exit taxiways and cancellation of Kingfisher flights.
As per the new seasonal flight schedule from October 28 to March 30, 2013, flights at the Mumbai airport will go up to 510 as compared to 491 during the same period last year. The slots for international flights have also increased from 1,321 a week last year to 1,374.
The increase in flights, however, will not lead to a reduction in airfares.
According to aviation experts, the new rapid exit taxiways at Mumbai airport have helped in increasing flight handling capacity from 32 movements per hour to 44.
"Although flight slots have dropped by about 20% across the country, Mumbai airport's capacity has increased as
the new rapid exit taxiways improved its capacity to handle flight movements," said Kapil Kaul, chief executive officer (South Asia) for the Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation, an industry think tank. "The number has also gone up because other domestic carriers have taken up slots unused by Kingfisher Airlines."
The aviation regulator only approved 30 slots for Kingfisher this season, which is less than half of what the debt-ridden airline got in the 2011 winter schedule.