AHMEDABAD- In the upcoming three days, the Ahmedabad Airport (AMD) data reveals an extraordinary surge in private charter flights, with more than 150 flights expected—four times the typical traffic.
The reason for this remarkable increase is the highly anticipated India-Pakistan match in the ICC World Cup, scheduled to take place at the Narendra Modi Stadium, recognized as the world’s largest cricket ground, this coming Saturday. This exciting 48-match tournament extends until November 19.
Ahmedabad Airport See Surge in Private Charters
According to an informed source to ET, the Ahmedabad airport has reached its capacity for parking private jets. As a result, it is providing conditional approval for some of these jets while advising others to park at alternate airports like Surat and Mumbai.
Kanika Tekriwal, the founder of JetSetGo, a charter operator and aggregator, noted that the last time they witnessed such overwhelming demand for private jets was during the extravagant wedding of Mukesh Ambani’s daughter, Isha Ambani.
Tekriwal also stated that all the private charters operated by her company, whether owned or arranged, are slated to land in Ahmedabad on Saturday.
Tekriwal further mentioned that most of her clientele comprises high-net-worth and ultra-high-net-worth individuals hailing from cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, and Bengaluru. The remainder of the customers are businesses organizing flights for their top executives.
The majority of these flights are scheduled to arrive at the city airport around 1 pm, just in time for the 2 pm match.
According to Atiesh Mishra, the Director of AJM Jet Management, significant events such as the ICC World Cup have led to a surge in demand for private jets, notably this year. Mishra has stationed himself in Ahmedabad to address last-minute inquiries personally.
Additionally, many people are booking charter flights to address connectivity challenges.
Hemal Modi, the Managing Director of Skytrax Aviation, a channel partner for VistaJet, noted that multiple charter services are available from locations that do not offer direct connectivity to Ahmedabad. Modi’s company is currently operating charter services from Indore, Visakhapatnam, and Kolhapur to Ahmedabad.
Hemal Modi also mentioned that they offer connecting charter flights, like a route from Mumbai to Ahmedabad via Surat.
Vineet Sehgal, the CEO of Million Air, an aircraft charter operator, emphasized the unprecedented demand for private charter services this time, comparing it to the level of demand last seen in 2011 during the India-Pakistan cricket match in Mohali.
Sehgal’s company is set to operate 14 private jets on Saturday. He noted that recent matches in Delhi and Chennai saw only about 2 to 3 charter jets.
Kanika Tekriwal, who has also arranged private jet flights for cricket team captains ahead of the ICC World Cup, mentioned that demand for other matches hasn’t been as high, but inquiries may surge closer to those matches.
Mandar Bharde, the Managing Director of MAB Aviation, a charter and air ambulance operator, mentioned a high number of queries, including those from NRIs in the Middle East.
Most business jets can accommodate four to six passengers, with rates ranging from Rs 2-6 lakh per hour.
Tekriwal added that they have maintained regular rates for their existing clients. Still, due to flying aircraft to other airports like Surat and Mumbai, charges have naturally increased by up to 35%.
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