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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, India. It is the largest airport in Eastern India and plays a crucial role in connecting the region to the rest of the country and the world. In this article, we will explore the history, infrastructure, services, and future developments of the Kolkata Airport, highlighting its significance and impact on the region’s economy and tourism.

The History of Kolkata Airport

The Kolkata Airport has a rich history that dates back to the early 1920s. It was originally established as a military airfield during the British colonial era. The airport witnessed its first commercial flight in 1924 when an aircraft of the British Imperial Airways landed here. Over the years, the airport underwent several expansions and modernizations to accommodate the growing air traffic and meet international standards.

One of the significant milestones in the airport’s history was the construction of a new integrated terminal, Terminal 2, which was inaugurated in 2013. This state-of-the-art terminal has enhanced the airport’s capacity to handle a larger number of passengers and provide world-class facilities.

Infrastructure and Facilities

The Kolkata Airport boasts modern infrastructure and a wide range of facilities to ensure a seamless travel experience for passengers. Let’s take a closer look at some of its key features:


1. Terminals

The airport has two terminals: Terminal 2 for domestic flights and Terminal 3 for international flights. Terminal 2 is spread across an area of 195,000 square meters and has the capacity to handle around 20 million passengers annually. It is equipped with numerous check-in counters, security checkpoints, lounges, and retail outlets.

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Terminal 3, on the other hand, covers an area of 150,000 square meters and has the capacity to handle around 10 million passengers annually. It offers a range of facilities, including duty-free shops, restaurants, and immigration counters.

2. Runways

The Kolkata Airport has two parallel runways, each measuring 3,627 meters in length. These runways can accommodate large aircraft and facilitate smooth takeoffs and landings. The airport has also implemented advanced navigational aids and lighting systems to ensure safe operations even during adverse weather conditions.

3. Cargo Facilities

The airport has dedicated cargo terminals to handle both domestic and international cargo. These facilities are equipped with modern handling equipment and adhere to international standards of safety and security. The cargo terminals play a vital role in facilitating trade and commerce in the region, connecting businesses to global markets.


4. Passenger Amenities

The Kolkata Airport offers a range of amenities to enhance the comfort and convenience of passengers. These include lounges, prayer rooms, medical facilities, baby care rooms, and special assistance for elderly and disabled passengers. The airport also provides free Wi-Fi connectivity throughout the terminals, allowing passengers to stay connected during their journey.

Services and Airlines

The Kolkata Airport is served by numerous domestic and international airlines, connecting the city to various destinations across the globe. Some of the major airlines operating at the airport include Air India, IndiGo, SpiceJet, Emirates, Singapore Airlines, and Thai Airways. These airlines offer a wide range of services, including both passenger and cargo transportation.

The airport provides excellent connectivity to major cities in India, such as Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, and Bangalore. It also offers international flights to destinations like Dubai, Singapore, Bangkok, and Kuala Lumpur. The availability of a diverse range of airlines and destinations makes the Kolkata Airport a preferred choice for both business and leisure travelers.

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Impact on Economy and Tourism

The Kolkata Airport plays a significant role in driving the economy of Eastern India. It serves as a major gateway for trade and commerce, facilitating the movement of goods and services. The airport’s cargo facilities handle a substantial volume of exports and imports, contributing to the region’s economic growth.


Moreover, the airport’s connectivity to various domestic and international destinations attracts tourists from all over the world. Kolkata, with its rich cultural heritage, historical landmarks, and vibrant festivals, is a popular tourist destination. The Kolkata Airport serves as the primary entry point for tourists visiting the region, boosting the tourism industry and generating employment opportunities.

Future Developments

The Kolkata Airport has several future developments in the pipeline to further enhance its infrastructure and services. One of the key projects is the construction of a new integrated terminal, Terminal 1, which will increase the airport’s capacity to handle more passengers. The new terminal will be equipped with advanced technology and modern amenities to provide a world-class experience to travelers.

Additionally, the airport authorities are focusing on improving the airport’s connectivity to the city center. Plans are underway to construct a new metro line that will connect the airport to various parts of Kolkata, making it easier for passengers to commute. These developments will not only improve passenger experience but also contribute to the overall growth and development of the region.


The Kolkata Airport, with its rich history, modern infrastructure, and excellent services, serves as a vital gateway to Eastern India. It connects the region to various domestic and international destinations, facilitating trade, tourism, and economic growth. The airport’s future developments, including the construction of a new terminal and improved connectivity, will further enhance its capacity and contribute to the region’s progress. The Kolkata Airport continues to play a crucial role in shaping the region’s economy and positioning Kolkata as a prominent destination on the global map.



1. How many terminals does the Kolkata Airport have?

The Kolkata Airport has two terminals: Terminal 2 for domestic flights and Terminal 3 for international flights.

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2. What is the length of the runways at the Kolkata Airport?

The runways at the Kolkata Airport are 3,627 meters long.

3. Which airlines operate at the Kolkata Airport?

Several domestic and international airlines operate at the Kolkata Airport, including Air India, IndiGo, SpiceJet, Emirates, Singapore Airlines, and Thai Airways.

4. How does the Kolkata Airport contribute to the region’s economy?

The Kolkata Airport facilitates trade and commerce by handling a significant volume of cargo. It also boosts the tourism industry by attracting visitors to the region.


5. What are the future developments planned for the Kolkata Airport?

The Kolkata Airport has plans to construct a new integrated terminal, Terminal 1, and improve connectivity to the city center through a new metro line.

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