The Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) has banned chartered flights from Kathmandu in an attempt to arrange for the operating costs of the recently started Gautam Buddha International Airport in Bhairahawa.
The bold decision comes after news emerged that GBIA is running short of operating costs due to the lack of flights it is getting. The authority believes shifting the ‘Business’ privileges of chartered flights to Bhairahawa will help mitigate the financial strain the new airport is bearing.
The authority made the announcement via a notice. As per the decision, international companies won’t receive permission for chartered fights at TIA in the winter season.
Information Officer Gyanendra Bhul, CAAN shared that the decision will help generate operating costs for the GBIA. He added that the ongoing construction of the taxi-way at TIA also contributed to the decision of moving chartered flights to Bhairahawa.
CAAN has already started moving chartered flights to Bhairahawa, but the decision has been formally made with notice.
Chartered flights are being rescheduled
The authority has moved chartered flights of Nepal Airlines and Himalaya Airlines from TIA to Bhairahawa and pulled some flights from Kathmandu in doing so.
From the start of Sunday, November 6th, both companies will each board 2 flights from Bhairahawa.
From now on, any airline company boarding more than 3 flights will need to operate additional flights from GBIA. The decision applies to domestic flag carriers bound for their existing destinations.
As for foreign companies, they are allowed till December 15 to reschedule their flights.
CAAN states that companies failing to comply won’t get flight permission from Tribhuwan International Airport. The authority recently denied a Nepal Airlines flight causing a massive rift between the authorities and the passengers.