Tribune News Service
Amritsar, September 6
Great news for international flyers — Air India is set to start a direct Amritsar-Rome flight from Sri Guru Ram Das Jee International Airport from September 8.
Earlier, the airport had established direct air connectivity with Heathrow, London and Birmingham.
As per the schedule, the flight AI123 will take off from Amritsar every Wednesday at 3.55 pm and reach Rome the same day. The return flight will depart from Rome the next day on Thursday and reach Amritsar on Friday morning at 5.35am. Air India will operate its Boeing 787 Dreamliner on this route.
Hailing the move, Sameep Singh Gumtala, Global Convener of the FlyAmritsar Initiative working for better air connectivity for the holy city, said this once-a-week flight would hugely benefit the Punjabi diaspora in Italy.
Gumtala said the resumption of the flight comes after the decision by the Italy Government to relax restrictions on passengers arriving from India.
“This is a big relief for thousands of people, who got stranded in India due to the decision by Italy to ban direct flights in late April this year,” he said.
The air passengers had to pay hefty fare to reach their destination through connecting flights via other countries and complete quarantine requirements during the transit. This direct flight will now reduce the cost and also their travel time to just 7 to 8 hours.
The operation of these flights to three destinations in Europe provides a big boost for direct international connectivity from the airport, said Yogesh Kamra, convener (India) of the FlyAmritsar Initiative and secretary of Amritsar Vikas Manch, an NGO.
Kamra said Amritsar was currently India’s only airport that is directly connected with two airports in the UK. With the resumption of Rome flight, it will be the only airport in India after Delhi directly connecting with three destinations in Europe by the Indian national carrier — Air India, he claimed.
- As per the schedule, the flight AI123 will take off from Amritsar every Wednesday at 3.55 pm and reach Rome the same day
- The return flight will depart from Rome the next day on Thursday and reach Amritsar on Friday morning at 5.35am
- Air India will operate its Boeing 787 Dreamliner on this route
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