Wednesday, May 03, 2017

Airlines offered bait for T2 shift

New Delhi: Budget airline flyers may get some relief from the choking congestion at IGI Airport's terminal 1—where IndiGo, SpiceJet and GoAir operate their domestic flights from—only this winter. The Delhi Airport does not have any peak hour slots available due to which airlines are not able to add flights.
The government has decided that additional slots, created by enhancing runway usage, will be given to low cost carriers (LCC) this winter. These airlines have got time till October to shift from T1 to T2. The latter has been lying unused since 2010.
"IGIA can currently handle 67 flights an hour—62 schedule besides five VVIP, defence or charter flights. By winter, the hourly handling capacity of its three runways will be hiked to 73 and there will be six more slots available every hour. These slots to operate extra flights can be offered as incentive to LCCs, which agree to shift from T1 to T2 in the winter schedule. This might happen by October-end," said a highly-placed source.
For this summer schedule, DIAL had said it did not have any extra slot between 7am and 10pm. IndiGo alone, for instance, did not get slots for 30 flights it wanted to operate from Delhi this summer due to the capacity crunch at IGIA—both on runway and terminal side.
If air traffic control (ATC) is able to add six more slots an hour by winter, this will mean 90 (6 x 15) additional flights in the period. "Hopefully the incentive of these many extra flights makes some LCCs shift from T1 to T2. This will reduce congestion at T1, which has an annual passenger handling capacity of 2 crore but handled 2.4 crore flyers last year," said a source.
03/05/17 Saurabh Sinha/Times of India