November 18, 2015 (AirportChandigarh.com): Spicejet started a direct flight from Amritsar to Dubai on Sunday bringing joy to thousands of NRIs and tourists who frequently travel between Punjab and Dubai. Having an option to travel directly to Dubai from Amritsar would save both time and cost as opposed to travelling via Delhi to Dubai. Spicejet operates the direct flight six days a week except Saturday. There are five other international flights that Spicejet operates from Amritsar. The approximate fare for one way trip is around INR 10,449 (subject to change anytime.)
While Spicejet has made several announcements in the past about starting an international flight from Chandigarh to Dubai, so far nothing has happened. The new airport at Mohali is all set to handle international flights, however even after waiting for several years, no international flight has ever taken off. Chandigarh residents now have the option to travel to Amritsar instead of Delhi to catch a direct flight to Dubai.
If you prefer to travel by road from Chandigarh, then Amritsar is a better option compared to Delhi. That’s because Amritsar airport can easily be reached by road and the traffic is easier to handle than Delhi. It takes an extra hour of driving within Delhi in order to reach the IGI Airport. Distance-wise there is not much difference, but one will most likely save more time via road travel to Amritsar than Delhi. If you prefer to travel by air only and can afford the extra fare, then you may be better off travelling via Delhi to Dubai from Chandigarh.
Fear Factor Kept Away Airlines From Launching International Flights
As per the recent media news, Chandigarh international airport was to be closed for about 10 months for runway resurfacing. Punjab's CM Badal intervened and requested that it should not be closed. The Union Goverment recently decided to not close the airport and to build a parallel taxi track (PTT) - something that has already been done at the airport in Goa. It was due to this reason that the airlines were not keen on starting international flights from Mohali, but since the airport will now remain open, it is quite likely that the airlines will soon offer them.