Hubballi airport gets busier big metal birds land here

The crew of the IndiGo A320 flight, the first 180-seater passenger flight operating from Hubballi Airport, seen waving during the launch of the service. dh photo

With the inclusion of Hubballi Airport under the UDAN regional connectivity scheme, the gateway to North Karnataka region now has air connectivity with several important cities in the country. IndiGo has also started the service of the bigger aircraft - A320 - for the first time from here.

The airport, which so far had the service of smaller aircraft, is now connected with IndiGo’s 180-seater flights operating daily to Bengaluru, Ahmedabad and Chennai.

From July 1, IndiGo’s bigger flight is leaving Bengaluru at 8.10 am and landing in Hubballi at 9.10 am. After taking off from Hubballi at 9.40 am, it reaches Ahmedabad at 11.20 am. It takes off from Ahmedabad at 11.50 am and lands in Hubballi 1.30 pm. The Chennai flight will leave Hubballi at 2 pm and reach Chennai at 3.20 pm. From Chennai, it will leave at 3.50 pm and reach Hubballi at 5.20 pm. The flight to Bengaluru will leave Hubballi at 5.50 pm and reach Bengaluru at 6.50 pm.

After the airport was upgraded to handle more and bigger aircraft, air service from here resumed last year, with Air India operating a 72-seater ATR on the Hubballi-Bengaluru route and 140-seater A319 on the Bengaluru-Hubballi-Mumbai route.

SpiceJet was the first airlines to start operations from here under the UDAN scheme. On May 14, it started ATR service, with two flights to Bengaluru and one each to Chennai, Hyderabad and Mumbai daily. June 28 marked the beginning of IndiGo’s ATR service from Hubballi to Goa and Kochi.

MP Pralhad Joshi said Star Air would start flight service from Hubballi to Pune, Tirupati and Hindon near Delhi, most likely on August 1.

“The upgraded airport is meant to handle flights up to A320 category and IndiGo’s A320 flights are operating smoothly. A319 flight of Air India is also of the same category, but with lesser seats,” said Hubballi Airport director S K Ahilya.

Hubballi Airport, upgraded at a cost of Rs 142 crore, was reopened in December last year. The runway has been expanded from 1,674 metres to 2,600 metres. A new terminal building with a capacity to handle 300 passengers at a time was constructed and a new air traffic control (ATC) tower was also built.

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