New Delhi: If you’re thinking of planning a budget vacation to popular tourist destinations like Hampi, Pithoragarh, Gangtok and Shimla, then the new airline carriers launched under UDAN are offering just that. Under the UDAN (Ude Desh ka Aam Naagrik) scheme, the Centre rolled out low-cost carriers focused on flights to and fro from tourist spots including Gangtok in Sikkim, Hampi in Karnataka, Shimla in Himachal Pradesh and Pithoragarh in Uttarakhand. While offering budget carriers financial incentives, the government has put a cap on airline fares, under the scheme.
With the objective of boosting unserved and underserved airports in India, new airline services began in more than 120 air routes to 37 unserved and underserved airports in the first 20 months of the scheme.
Hampi, Karnataka: The New York Times placed archaeological centre Hampi at number in its list of ‘52 Places to Go in 2019’, saying: “The Unesco World Heritage site has been notoriously difficult to reach, until now. TruJet recently began daily direct flights from Hyderabad and Bangalore to Ballari, a 25-mile drive from Hampi.” TruJet started direct flights on a daily basis from Hyderabad and Bangalore to Ballari, a 25-mile drive from Hampi.
Gangtok in Sikkim: With SpiceJet launching flights from Pakyong to Kolkata and Guwahati in October, tourists were given easier access to the state. Previously, to reach Gangtok, tourists had to catch a flight to Bagdogra after a 5-6 hour journey by road.
Shimla in Himachal Pradesh: Shimla is also situated across a difficult terrain, which UDAN has now connected for travel convenience. In April 2017, Shimla was the first airport to see connectivity UDAN. The route saw a total of 14,041 passengers on UDAN flights operated by Alliance Air between April 2017 and September, the data from the Airports Authority of India says.
Pantnagar and Pithoragarh in Uttarakhand : Locations in the mountainous regions of Pantnagar and Pithoragarh in Uttarakhand have also seen connectivity under the plan to Dehradun. The Pithoragarh district saw a footfall of 2,43,688 tourists, while Pantnagar saw 1,40,794 tourists.