It’s now a little easier to reach India’s most famous tourist attraction, the spectacular Taj Mahal…
IndiGo adds a bunch of flights to Agra
Despite the fact that around 8 million people visit the Taj Mahal every year, the Agra airport itself sees a tiny amount of air traffic (and has just a handful of regular services).
There are several reasons for this. Firstly, the city’s airport is a military airbase, meaning the air force must grant permission before civilian services are added.
On top of that, there’s speculation that the Indian government deliberately suppresses air service to Agra because it would rather funnel high-spending tourists through Delhi. Consequently, many Taj Mahal visitors do begin their journey in Delhi.
The Indian capital is several hours away from Agra by rail or road – though the highway is very good, as we found on our recent trip earlier this month.
I’ve also read reports that suggest air service to Agra is limited owing to fears of polluting the Taj Mahal.
Anyway, low fares airline IndiGo has just launched a series of new routes to Agra, with non-stop flights from Mumbai, Bengaluru, Ahmedabad and Bhopal.
Flights between Bhopal and Agra run daily, while Mumbai gets a three-times-a-week service, with flights on Monday, Wednesday and Saturday.
From Bengaluru, there are four flights per week, on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, while Ahmedabad has flights on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
Commenting on the first of the new services, director of Agra airport, AA Ansari, told Times of India that the inaugural flight between Agra and Bengaluru “received a good response” though the number of passengers using the Bhopal flight was “comparatively less”.
The inaugural flights were given the traditional water cannon welcome, while passengers were handed flowers as they disembarked.
There’s a big shortage of flights to Agra, so it’s great to see Indigo adding non-stop air service from Mumbai, Bengaluru, Ahmedabad and Bhopal.
Stay tuned for more coverage of our recent trip to Agra, including a review of the super luxe Oberoi Amarvilas, and our top tips for seeing the city in style…