Direct Flights from Muscat and Abu Dhabi to Mangalore -Online Booking Open in First Week of February

26 January 2007

Following top level meetings at Air India Express headquarters in Mumbai, the officials have informed us that they have changed their flight schedule and will now be flying the first flight to Mangalore from Muscat and Abu Dhabi on March 1st 2007, BUT if everything goes positively, then they may prepone the maiden flight to February 24, 2007.
Timings and Aircraft Movement

Days of flight operations will remain the same – Thursdays and Saturdays.

The assigned AI aircraft for the said maiden flight on Thursday, March 1st 2007 will fly the following sectors: Trivandrum – Abu Dhabi – Muscat – Mangalore – Abu Dhabi - Muscat – Trivandrum.

The tentative timings-

Departure from Mangalore: 00:01 hrs (midnight). This gives more than a three hour gap to the Mangalore Airport Immigration as the Dubai flight takes off at 9 pm from Mangalore. (Other related flight timings will be confirmed by AI Express shortly).

According to AI officials, four new Boeing 737-800NG Aircrafts have been delivered to Air India Express, presently parked at Mumbai terminal. AI has already recruited many foreign Flight Commanders and right now they are short of First Officers, but the process of recruiting more first officers is on. As Mangalore Airport is categorized as a table top airport, the pilots who are operating this sector have to do the test flights landing and take off in order to get certified prior to operating a commercial flight to Mangalore. For this reason, AI Express has already flown a certain number of Captains to Mangalore Airport to be certified.

Changes in flight schedules

The dates given to us first hand by Air India Express have been shifting from March 2007 to January 18th to February 15th and finally back to March 1st 2007, but officials are of the opinion that these changes in flight schedules are very common in the aviation industry due to unforeseen circumstances.

All hurdles facing the flight operations have been outlined in our earlier report dated January 10, 2007, wherein we had clearly stated that the flight will take off subject to certain conditions. The conditions included AI shortage of staff and immigration facilities at Bajpe Airport. While the former has been sorted out to a large extent, the same report also stated that “the airport authorities are working very hard on expanding Immigration facilities to take in more International flights.”

On Line bookings Open

Whether the direct flight from Muscat and Abu Dhabi to Mangalore will take off on March 1st or February 24th, Air India Express headquarters in Mumbai have assured us that the online bookings for either date will be opened within the first week of February.

Let’s hold them to their word and hope for the best.

Updated Information from Mangalore Airport

Team Mangalorean Oman, today, spoke directly to Mr. Vasudevan, the Mangalore Airport Director. He has assured us, that full cooperation will be given by the Mangalore Airport Authority, if Air India Express from Muscat flies into Mangalore anytime from February 24th onwards. He also stated that the Airport Authorities staff is very efficient and cooperative, so they need ONLY a maximum time of 3 hours between each flight to ease out the airport congestion, mainly at the Immigration counters.

Team Mangalorean also contacted Mr. Rao, Station Manager Air India at Bajpe Airport. He confirmed that he has received intimation from AI headquarters Mumbai, regarding the tentative date of the maiden flight being March 1st 2007. He also said that it is unfortunate for Mangaloreans in Muscat and Abu Dhabi that Air India Express will not be able to operate on February 15th 2007 as previously planned by them.

Cochin – Mangalore – Doha – Bahrain sector

Mr. Rao also informed us that the Cochin – Mangalore – Doha – Bahrain and return flight will tentatively commence between March 25th and April 1st 2007 on Tuesdays and Fridays. Since this flight will be touching two Indian domestic sectors, both Cochin and Mangalore have been alloted 50% of the seats each.

Dubai – Mangalore sector

Mr. Rao stated that by March 25th 2007, Air India Express will operate six flights between Dubai and Mangalore on all the days of the week except Tuesdays. Timings will remain the same.

Kuwait – Mangalore sector

Air India Express has recognized the great market potential in the Kuwait – Mangalore sector and they are seriously considering the commencement of this flight by end of April 2007.

Mangalore Airport – Definitely ready for more International flights!!!

Mr. Vasudev, Mr. Rao and other officials at the Bajpe Airport were very upbeat about handling more International flights from the Gulf destinations. As quoted by Mr. Rao, Station Manager Air India, come April 2007, Mangalore Airport will be handling a total of twelve Air India Express International flights per week. Hats off to Mr. Vasudev, Mr. Rao and their team for being so positive and accepting the challenge of handling the additional flights.

We will continue to keep you informed of the developments. Updates will follow.


Rocky said...

Its good that international airport is comming up in mangalore. But i don;t trust Indian Airline or Air India.

ash said...

if everything goes fine, maybe by april end there will be 12 international flights operating from mangalore every week.

Nobody Likes Me said...

12 international flight by the end of april. You must be kidding or dreaming. shut the hell up ash and don;t just spread some nonsense news

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