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The Kolkata Airport: A Gateway to Eastern India

kolkata airport

kolkata airport

The Kolkata Airport, also known as Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport, is the primary airport serving the city of Kolkata, the capital of the Indian state of West Bengal. With its rich history, strategic location, and modern infrastructure, the airport plays a crucial role in connecting Eastern India to the rest of the world. In this article, we will explore the various aspects of the Kolkata Airport, including its history, facilities, connectivity, and future plans.

The History of Kolkata Airport

The Kolkata Airport has a long and illustrious history that dates back to the early 20th century. It was established in 1924 as Dum Dum Airport, making it one of the oldest airports in India. Initially, it served as a military airbase during World War II, but later it was converted into a civilian airport.

Over the years, the airport has undergone several expansions and renovations to meet the growing demands of air travel. In 1995, it was renamed as Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport in honor of the prominent freedom fighter. Today, it stands as a modern and well-equipped airport, catering to millions of passengers every year.

Facilities at Kolkata Airport

The Kolkata Airport boasts a wide range of facilities and amenities to ensure a comfortable and convenient experience for travelers. Let’s take a closer look at some of the key facilities:


1. Terminal Buildings

The airport has two terminal buildings: Terminal 1 for domestic flights and Terminal 2 for international flights. Both terminals are equipped with modern facilities, including check-in counters, security checkpoints, lounges, and duty-free shops.

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2. Lounges

Kolkata Airport offers premium lounges for passengers looking for a more luxurious experience. These lounges provide comfortable seating, complimentary refreshments, Wi-Fi access, and other amenities to help travelers relax before their flights.

3. Dining and Shopping

The airport houses a variety of dining options, ranging from fast-food chains to fine dining restaurants, catering to different tastes and preferences. Additionally, there are numerous shops selling a wide range of products, including clothing, electronics, souvenirs, and more.

4. Medical Facilities

Kolkata Airport has a well-equipped medical center to handle any medical emergencies that may arise. The center is staffed with trained medical professionals and is equipped with essential medical equipment.


5. Currency Exchange and Banking

For the convenience of international travelers, the airport provides currency exchange services and banking facilities. Passengers can easily exchange their currency or access banking services without leaving the airport premises.

Connectivity and Airlines

The Kolkata Airport is well-connected to various domestic and international destinations, making it a crucial hub for air travel in Eastern India. It serves as a gateway to popular tourist destinations like Darjeeling, Sundarbans, and the Northeastern states. Let’s explore the connectivity and airlines operating at the airport:

1. Domestic Connectivity

Kolkata Airport is well-connected to major cities across India through numerous domestic airlines. Airlines like IndiGo, Air India, SpiceJet, and Vistara operate regular flights to destinations such as Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai, and many more.

2. International Connectivity

The airport also offers international flights to various destinations, connecting Kolkata to the rest of the world. Airlines like Emirates, Singapore Airlines, Thai Airways, and Qatar Airways operate regular international flights from Kolkata Airport to cities like Dubai, Singapore, Bangkok, Doha, and more.


3. Cargo Operations

In addition to passenger flights, Kolkata Airport also plays a significant role in cargo operations. It serves as a major hub for transporting goods and commodities to different parts of the country and abroad. The airport has dedicated cargo terminals and facilities to handle the growing demand for air cargo services.

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Future Plans and Upgrades

The Kolkata Airport has ambitious plans for future expansions and upgrades to enhance its capacity and efficiency. Some of the key future plans include:

1. New Integrated Terminal

The airport authorities are working on the construction of a new integrated terminal that will consolidate both domestic and international operations under one roof. This new terminal will have state-of-the-art facilities and will significantly increase the airport’s capacity to handle more passengers.

2. Runway Expansion

To accommodate larger aircraft and increase flight operations, the airport plans to expand its existing runways. This expansion will enable the airport to handle more flights and reduce congestion during peak hours.


3. Improved Passenger Amenities

The airport aims to enhance passenger amenities by introducing new facilities and services. This includes the addition of more lounges, improved dining options, better shopping experiences, and upgraded medical facilities.


1. How far is Kolkata Airport from the city center?

Kolkata Airport is located approximately 17 kilometers away from the city center. The travel time between the airport and the city center can vary depending on traffic conditions.

2. Are there any hotels near Kolkata Airport?

Yes, there are several hotels located near Kolkata Airport, offering convenient accommodation options for travelers. Some popular hotels include Hyatt Regency Kolkata, Swissotel Kolkata, and Novotel Kolkata Hotel and Residences.

3. Is there public transportation available from Kolkata Airport?

Yes, there are various public transportation options available from Kolkata Airport. Passengers can choose from taxis, app-based cab services, and buses to reach their desired destinations in the city.


4. Can I rent a car at Kolkata Airport?

Yes, several car rental companies operate at Kolkata Airport, providing options for passengers to rent a car for their travel needs. It is advisable to book a car in advance to ensure availability.

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5. How early should I arrive at Kolkata Airport before my flight?

It is recommended to arrive at the airport at least two hours before domestic flights and three hours before international flights. This allows sufficient time for check-in, security procedures, and other pre-flight formalities.


The Kolkata Airport, with its rich history, modern facilities, and strategic connectivity, serves as a vital gateway to Eastern India. It provides a seamless travel experience for both domestic and international passengers, offering a wide range of amenities and services. With its ambitious future plans and upgrades, the airport is poised to further enhance its capacity and efficiency, ensuring a world-class experience for travelers. Whether you are a tourist exploring the vibrant city of Kolkata or a business traveler visiting Eastern India, the Kolkata Airport is ready to welcome you with open arms.

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