Bagdogra Airport in Siliguri is now officially open for international operations. The monumental event was marked by a Druk Air aircraft, which connected Bangkok with Paro, Bhutan. Additionally, airport officials have noted that flights would operate twice weekly. Here’s all you need to know about it. By Eshita Srinivas
Known to be the gateway airport to the hill regions of Darjeeling, Kurseong, Kalimpong, Mirik, and other parts of North Bengal, Bagdogra Airport is an important base for travellers. First used only by the Indian Air Force, it’s now a fully-functional commercial airport. And while domestic flights are a common occurrence at the spot, international flights weren’t operational for about two years. This changed recently when a Druk Air aircraft landed at Bagdogra.
International flights at Bagdogra will operate twice weekly
Scheduled International Flight Operations resumed at Bagdogra Airport by @Drukair from 4.6.2022 as per the following schedule.
Every Monday,STA: 1150,STD: 1240
— Bagdogra Airport (@aaibagairport) July 4, 2022
Airport officials have stated that scheduled international operations would resume on Mondays and Tuesdays. The former will have a flight from Paro – Bagdogra – Bangkok, scheduled at 11:50 am and the latter will have a Bangkok – Bagdogra – Paro flight slotted for 8:40 am. Reflecting on the new changes, Subramani P, director of the Bagdogra airport was quoted by Times of India as saying, “On the first day only four passengers arrived from Paro to Bagdogra and five departing to Bangkok from Bagdogra.”
He added that with the Air Force completing the runway construction, the airport had seen an increase in passengers, with the number projected to rise as flights get more frequent. At the moment, 28 flights operate out of the spot, Times Now reports. June recorded about 8,000 travellers. Adding to this, Subramani said, “We have crossed the pre-COVID figure with fewer flights. Also, the number of hours is also fewer. Pre-pandemic hours used to be from 7 am to 8 pm and now, it’s 8 am to 5 pm.”
Bagdogra airport often has flight cancellations due to low visibility, heavy rain, and other weather complications. For updates regarding this and other important information, follow the official Twitter account here.
All images: Airports Authority Of India