Private carrier IndiGo has proposed to increase the frequency of its daily services on Tiruchi – Chennai – Tiruchi sector. The airline, which already operates four flights to Chennai from Tiruchi every day, has now planned to launch a fifth one from December 23, airport sources said. The air carrier has filed the slot for operation of the new service, which will further bolster domestic passenger movements from here. It has also started bookings for the proposed service, which will be operated using ATR aircraft as with the other four flights.
It has also communicated its plan to Airports Authority of India (AAI) officials here, the sources further said. After launching four daily services on Tiruchi – Chennai – Tiruchi sector, IndiGo expanded its operations by introducing flights to Bengaluru and Kochi from here. This has made it the lone private airline to operate daily flights to three different domestic destinations from Tiruchi airport, which, however, is way behind in terms of domestic passenger traffic as compared to Coimbatore and Madurai airports in the State.
The fifth service to Chennai from Tiruchi is proposed to be operated in the night, the sources added. The private airline operates a couple of flights to Bengaluru from Tiruchi and another one to Hyderabad, which was started recently. Stakeholders say there is heavy demand for flights to the country’s financial capital Mumbai and political capital New Delhi from Tiruchi, which is yet to be addressed. Although Jet Airways launched daily flight service on Tiruchi – Mumbai – New Delhi – Mumbai -Tiruchi sector in early 2018, the operation was suspended in October due to operational reasons.
Passengers feel that flight services should be resumed at the earliest as the demand is good and the airlines should tap the potential. AAI statistics shows that domestic traffic movement at the international airport here declined in the first six months of the current fiscal as compared to the corresponding period of the previous financial year.
Domestic passenger movements recorded from April to September 2019 was 1,45,300 lakh. This is a decline of 14% compared to the corresponding period of 2018 when it was 1,70,644.
(source : The Hindu)