Vijayawada Launches Daily Direct Flight to Mumbai

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Vijayawada, June 15: In a significant development for Vijayawada’s connectivity, the city’s International Airport inaugurated its first daily direct flight service to Mumbai on Saturday. The launch, operated by Air India, was celebrated with an inaugural ceremony attended by Machilipatnam MP Vallabhaneni Balashowry and Vijayawada MP Kesineni Sivanath (Chinni).

This direct flight meets a long-standing demand from Vijayawada’s business and trade communities. Initially, Air India introduced a thrice-weekly direct flight to Mumbai in 2018, which performed well. However, the service was discontinued after the 2019 government transition and the proposal of three capitals, which led to a decline in passenger numbers. The pandemic further compounded the situation, resulting in the flight’s suspension.

Continuous advocacy by the Andhra Pradesh Chamber of Commerce and Industry Federation (AP Chambers), AP Hotels Association, Vijayawada Chamber of Commerce, and CII has successfully reinstated this crucial connection. Following a feasibility study, Air India announced in May 2024 the commencement of a daily direct flight between Vijayawada and Mumbai.

The new service, utilizing an Airbus A320 with a seating capacity of 185 passengers, began operations on Saturday. The flight departs Mumbai at 5:45 PM and returns from Vijayawada at 7:10 PM. Remarkably, the inaugural flight was fully booked.

MP Balashowry expressed optimism, noting, “This direct Mumbai flight will boost international connectivity from the city,” and suggested the possibility of adding more domestic and international flights. MP Kesineni Chinni also highlighted the commitment to completing the international terminal at the airport, envisioning Vijayawada International Airport as one of the busiest in the country with Amaravati’s development as the green field capital city.