Flight Plan

Find the airport experience stressful? Here’s help at hand

Ashwini Phadnis | Updated on February 04, 2020

Delhi and Mumbai airport offer fliers services that take care of all their needs or specific tasks

For most people, airports are a necessary evil that has to dealt with if you are flying. This feeling is stronger for the elderly, young children and sick people taking flights.

However, help is at hand at least at the two busiest airports in the country at Delhi and Mumbai. These two airports are providing services, including carrying your bags from the car and being with you till the time you board the aircraft. These services are available to all passengers irrespective of the airline or whether they are flying in first, business, premium economy or economy class as they are being provided not by airlines but by the airport operators.

Entire suite or just some services

A person wanting to avail of these services can either take the entire suite of services on offer, like having a porter to get your bag, a manager to stand in line and check you in before meeting you after you have negotiated the immigration and security area to take you to the lounge where you can sit in luxurious surroundings, enjoying a bite and beverages, before escorting you to the boarding gate or you can opt for some services like, say, only using the lounge or having someone check you in.

The Pranam service at Mumbai airport, for example, gets travellers who only want assistance for check-in. “A product is available for that. There might be someone who wants only porter service.... a product is available for that. There might be a passenger who wants all facilities but does not want the lounge. A first and business class passenger gets lounge from the airline anyway, so all these individual services are also available, ” says Rekha Nair, Head, Airport Services.

Mumbai airport claims that it has trained staff for handling special needs children. “An autistic child needs to be handled with care. We have people who have been trained on how to deal with these special needs children,” Nair says.

At Delhi’s T3 airport, the Always Meet and Greet service can be booked online, through a phone call, on the website or when a passenger reaches the airport. Bhavya Kukreja, General Manager, PR and Marketing and Communication, Plaza Premium Group, which provides the service at Delhi airport, says the categories that make use of the facility in a big way are medical tourists, elderly people and children.

He points out that they also offer the option of taking end-to-end services. “Say, your aged parents are travelling to Canada from Delhi. We can provide the meet and greet service not only here but also in Canada as we provide it in airports abroad.”

At both airports, buggies are also available to transport passengers to the gate and the services are available for flyers flying out, flying in, or transiting through the airports.

A business opportunity

Of course, the two airports are seeing the provision of these services as a business opportunity. For instance, the promoters of Mumbai airport realised that there was a business opportunity since it was a new terminal. “We realised when we did a market study for the Indian market that typically any air travel has stress and anxiety. No matter how much you travel when you enter the airport you have stress — will I finish my immigration, security in time?” says Nair.

Admitting that the service is a niche one, the two airports, however, add that there is potential for growth. According to Mumbai, it catered to 40,000 flyers in the last seven months and Delhi airport claims that the footfalls have doubled.

Published on February 04, 2020

Follow us on Telegram, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Linkedin. You can also download our Android App or IOS App.

This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

You May Also Like