The Mumbai airport’s new integrated terminal will open on January 15. Air India’s Newark-Mumbai flight will be the first to arrive at the new terminal. On Saturday, Mumbai International Airport Ltd (MIAL)’s director of operations, Frank McCrorie, sent to all airlines a 45-day notice to prepare for shifting to the new terminal and changing their flight schedules. International operations will be suspended for a few hours during the transition.
The new terminal will have bigger areas for check-in, security check and baggage delivery. The new terminal, called T2, will initially handle only international flights; domestic operations might shift there later. The Mumbai airport handles 30 million passengers a year. The new terminal, spread over 439,000 sq metres, is expected to handle 40 million annually.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is expected to inaugurate the terminal this month so that the launch does not clash with the Election Commision’s code of conduct but operations will begin from January. Passenger traffic at the Mumbai airport is low on Wednesday and, hence, January 15 has been chosen as the launch date.
“Operational readiness trials have been carried out I can say 85-90% of the work in the new terminal is complete. Work on the elevated road to the terminal is still on. Airport lounges and retail and shopping areas in the terminal are not ready,” said an airline executive.