Airlines and operators are preparing for major peak-hour disruption at VABB/Mumbai Airport, on account of a partial shutdown of the main runway over the next five months.
The main runway will be closed for repairs from Nov 7 to Mar 28 between 0930-1730 local time, Mondays to Saturdays. The second runway will be operational during this time, but this can only handle 36 flights per hour – which is around 80% of the regular traffic.
The main runway will remain open on all the big festivals and holiday dates during this period: Dec 25, Jan 1 & 15, Feb 19 & 21, Mar 10 & 25.
This is the second time this year that Mumbai airport has enforced a partial runway shutdown. The first instance, which lasted from Feb 7 to March 30, was for repair works at the intersection of the two runways, which lead to peak hour closures.
Other things worth knowing:
- It’s not showing on the Notams, but local handlers have confirmed that VABB/Mumbai is closed to GA/BA flights daily at the following local times: 0800-1000, 1730-1930, 2115-2315, 0320-0400.
- VASU/Surat airport may be a good alternate for VABB/Mumbai (120NM away). It became an international airport of entry in Feb 2019 and has a 2250 metre long runway with ILS. The next nearest airports are VOGO/Goa (230NM away), or VAAH/Ahmedabad (240NM away).
- The ADS-B mandate across Indian airspace outlined in AIP SUP 148/2018 that was due to take effect on 1st Jan 2019, has now been delayed to 1st Jan 2020. Confirmation of this can be found in Notam G1995/18 (issued for VABF VIDF VECF VOMF).
- Since India introduced e-visas back in Feb 2018, they have stopped issuing visas on arrival. Crew must apply for the ‘e-Business Visa’, and passengers must apply for the ‘e-Tourist Visa’, on the government website: https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/