First passenger welcomed with claps and cheers at KIA | Bengaluru News – Times of India


BENGALURU: Ankita Singh walked into the terminal building of the Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) in the wee hours of of Monday to claps and cheers from the airport staff, After all, she was the first passenger to be boarding the first plane departing from the airport after a two-month-long hiatus in domestic flight operations.
Ankita, who works as the information security lead for a Bengaluru based firm, was heading to her hometown Ranchi to be with her family on the Air Asia flight I5 1621 to the Jharkhand capital. Ankita said she was impressed with the way things were being handled at the airport.

This is the third ticket she had booked and the only one that wasn’t cancelled since commercial passenger flight operations were grounded across the country two months ago.
“I was KIA’s first passenger after the lockdown and they greeted me by clapping and welcoming me into the airport building. I am quite impressed with how they have arranged everything, keeping social distancing in mind. It’s all automated now–from check-in to boarding. They are strictly following the guidelines to make sure people adhere to it at all times,” she said.

Being the first flight of the day, airport authorities were keenly observing how passengers of the Bengaluru-Ranchi flight behaved and adhered to social distancing norms, said Ankita.
“The staff were observing each passenger and checking for any issues. They are still getting to know the process so it might be overwhelming for a couple of days,” she said.
Doormats soaked with bleach, sensors to scan boarding passes, social distancing markers on floors and on chairs, with messages in Kannada and English, contactless check-in and self baggage drop facilities, contactless dining and retail experience, a slew of measures have been introduced at KIA to welcome passengers back. Boarding was done in batches of 10 passengers.
Hundreds of people who were stranded in other cities are expected to return home while many flew out to other destinations.
The Ranchi flight took off at 5.15am with 173 passengers and 3 infants on board. About 60 departures and 54 arrivals today are happening at KIA on Monday while 5 arrivals and 17 departures took place until 9am.
Newly imposed restrictions in some states led to cancellation of several outbound and arriving flights on Monday.





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Sagar Biswas

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