Saturday, May 31, 2008

Four new airlines to start operations from BIA

Four new airlines to start operations from BIA

Staff Reporter

Airport authorities are rectifying teething problems

Bangalore: Four new airlines will connect Bangalore to China, Muscat, Singapore and Hong Kong in June and July.

Tiger Air will commence operations to Singapore from Bengaluru International Airport (BIA) from June 1. It will operate an A320 four times a week on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday at 10 p.m.

Oman Air will launch operations to Muscat from June 16, and its A737 and A700 fleets will connect Muscat five days a week, except Fridays and Saturdays. The departure time is 2.50 a.m.

Dragon Air (a subsidiary of Cathay Pacific) will begin operations from BIA to Hong Kong from July 1. It will connect Hong Kong daily and the departure time is 2.20 a.m.

Sichuan Airline will connect South India to China through Bangalore. Sichuan Airline will connect Bangalore to Chengdu in China from mid-July. However, the frequency and departure time are being finalised, according to a press release. Chengdu is the capital of southwest Chinese province of Sichuan.

Jett8 will start its cargo operations from the city to Singapore from June 16, according to a press release issued by the Bengaluru International Airport Limited (BIAL) on Friday.

Starting from 341 Air Traffic Movements (ATMs) on the first day, the BIA is now operating 400 ATMs (total number of landings and take-offs in a day), the release said.
Issues resolved

The BIAL, while admitting that there were many issues that affected the services during the first week of the airport’s operation, said that at least nine issues brought to its notice by passengers had been resolved.

Problems such as delay in connecting aerobridges, baggage retrieval, etc. cropped up due to shortage of staff attached to the ground-handling agencies, as there was confusion on the airport’s opening date. The BIAL release claimed that no delay had been reported due to failure of any airport infrastructure during last 24 hours.

The release stated that steps had been taken to clean toilets more frequently, and clogging of some toilets was reported only on first day. Television and phone recharge facilities were in the process of being installed. Also, more doors would be opened for entry of passengers into the terminal building with the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) set to increase its strength to 990 from 770.
Fewer taxis

Regarding complaints about fewer taxis, the BIAL said that there were only 98 taxis on service on day one and their number had been increased to 670 over last one week, even as the Government issued more permits. As many as 900 taxis would be available at the taxi stand by the end of this week, the release added.

Referring to taxi fares, the BIAL clarified that no night surcharge (between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m.) was being charged for airport taxis for the first one month.

However, 25 per cent surcharge would be collected after one month as against 50 per cent surcharge permitted under government tariff order.

“We appreciate all the feedback and suggestions and take each one seriously. We intend to address all issues and ensure that the airport functions smoothly,” said BIAL CEO Albert Brunner.


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