Bagdogra airport will get 26 daily flights this summer, an all-time high that opens up the mouthwatering prospect of a bumper tourist season in Darjeeling and the Dooars.
Coming after last year’s 104-day strike that crippled tourism, hoteliers in the Hills are looking forward to the additional flights that will ferry tourists from all over the country. Last summer, Bagdogra had 22 flights.
Apart from multiple flights to Delhi (DEL), Kolkata (KOL) and Guwahati (GAU) this summer, there are two direct connections to Mumbai (MUM) and one to Bengaluru (BLR) daily. The highest number of connections though are to Delhi at 10 followed by 9 flights to Kolkata and 4 flights to Guwahati. At present, there are seven daily fligths between Kolkata and Bagdogra.
What comes as a dampner though is airlines’ willingness to operate only within an eight-hour time band with maximum flights still squeezed in between four hours. The lack of flights between 9am and 11am continue to be an inconvenience for tourists.
The highest number of flights is between 1pm and 3pm when 10 flights arrive at and 7 depart Bagdogra. Between 3pm and 5pm, the airport has seven arrivals and nine departures while between 11am and 1pm, there are six arrivals and an equal number of departures.