Mumbai Airport to reduce number of daily flights till March, to ease air traffic congestion

Mumbai Airport to reduce number of daily flights till March, to ease air traffic congestion

Mumbai Airport stands as India's second busiest airport, after Delhi.

Mumbai Airport is gearing up to slash approximately 30 flights per day, until March 30, in response to directives from the Airports Authority of India (AAI). This action is intended to address mounting concerns over runway congestion at one of the nation's busiest airports. Further, it is being estimated that airline fares may rise, given the situation at hand.

Akasa Air, IndiGo and Air India Group Among Affected Carriers

Authorities at the airport have been instructed to reduce aircraft movements from 46 to 44 during peak hours and from 42 to 40 during off-peak hours. Industry insiders anticipate around 40 flights to be affected starting this week. IndiGo is expected to cut 18 flights, while the Air India group, including Vistara, will reduce 17 aircraft.

The restrictions also extend to business jets, with operating limits increased from 4 to 8 hours. This move has sparked discontent among major corporate entities like Reliance Industries, JSW, and the Mahindra Group.

Owned by Adani Enterprises, Mumbai International Airport Limited (MIAL) stands as the nation's second busiest airport after Delhi, handling a staggering monthly traffic of 4.88 million passengers with a single runway.

Government officials assure that despite the cuts, the airport will maintain full operational capacity, handling approximately 1000 movements daily. Akasa Air has already announced the cancellation of 90 Mumbai flights, until the end of March.

SpiceJet has confirmed compliance with the directive but declined to specify the number of affected flights. Despite repeated requests, MIAL, Air India, AIX Connect, Vistara, and IndiGo have yet to issue statements regarding the matter.

The Ministry of Civil Aviation attributed the congestion to excessive slot distribution and non-adherence by airlines, prompting its intervention. MIAL, responsible for slot management, is urged to streamline operations to resolve the issue.

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