The long-pending demand for air connectivity linking Mysuru with the coastal region is set to become a reality from December 10.
Alliance Air, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Air India Ltd. is commencing direct flight operations between the two cities.
The flight will operate on Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays to start with, and if originating passenger traffic is encouraging, it could be a daily flight in the days ahead.
Flight 9I 532 will depart from Mysuru at 11.15 a.m. and reach Mangaluru at 12.15 p.m. In the return direction, Flight 9I 533 will depart from Mangaluru at 12.40 p.m. to arrive in Mysuru at 1.40 p.m.
To cater to the upcoming festivities, the airline has introduced this new flight on the route to add to the convenience of flyers who will be travelling to meet their family and friends in the festive season, said the airline authorities.
Bookings are open and there are various promotional offers. To check these out, log on to www.airindia.in or contact any of the travel agents, the authorities added.
The airline is adhering to all government guidelines and is following prescribed standard operating procedures (SOPs) issued by the Ministry of Civil Aviation. Required precautionary measures are being taken within the aircraft as well at the time of check-in, boarding and arrival at the destination. The aircraft are being rigorously disinfected after each flight to eliminate any risk of contagion, said the airline in a release.
Mysuru airport director R. Manjunath said the flights were originally scheduled to commence during October but had to be put off due to technical and operational issues that have been sorted out now.
He expressed confidence that the originating air passenger traffic from Mysuru to Mangaluru would be high and it could be a daily flight in due course. There was tremendous demand and constant follow-up by the members of the Federation of Karnataka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (FKCCI), Mysore Industries Association (MIA) and others, many of whose members have coastal Karnataka links.
At present the surface transport from Mysuru to Mangaluru was by train or bus and is an excruciating journey lasting around 6 to 8 hours. Also, it is out of bounds during rainy season due to landslips in Kodagu.
Sudhakar Shetty of the FKCCI said there are nearly 12,000 families of coastal Karnataka origin residing in Mysuru apart from 2,000 entrepreneurs hailing from that region. The flight connectivity will not only give a thrust to industrial development but will also promote tourism, he added.
Mr. Manjunath said with the introduction of the Mangaluru flight, Mysuru airport will have 14 movements with to and fro connectivity to Bengaluru, Kochi, Goa, Chennai, Belagavi and Hyderabad. The other potential routes being explored include flights to Coimbatore, Tirupati and Shirdi