Now Fly More Conveniently from Australia, New Zealand, Thailand & Other Southeast Asian Countries to Amritsar
August 31, 2023: In a significant development for travelers hailing from Punjab and the global Punjabi diaspora, Malaysia’s leading carrier Malaysia Airlines is set to become the third Malaysia airline to offer direct flights connecting Amritsar with Kuala Lumpur.
This momentous development has been met with resounding enthusiasm from the FlyAmritsar Initiative, a prominent civil society advocacy dedicated to the development and expansion of Amritsar airport as a major regional and international gateway and the Amritsar Vikas Manch (AVM), a non-profit organization committed towards sustainable growth of Amritsar.
In a press release Sameep Singh Gumtala, Global Convener and Yogesh Kamra, Convener (India) for the FlyAmritsar Initiative and Secretary Amritsar Vikas Manch shared that starting from November 8, Malaysia Airlines will initiate non-stop flights connecting Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) to Sri Guru Ram Dass Jee International Airport (SGRDJIA) in Amritsar, Punjab. Presently, Batik Air operates three weekly direct flights while Air Asia X is poised to commence four weekly flights on this route from September 3 onwards.
According to the schedule available on its website, the airline will launch this route with two flights per week on every Wednesday and Saturday. The airline will deploy its 160-seater Boeing 737-800 aircraft for this route. Departing from KLIA at 6:50pm, the flight will land at SGRDJIA Amritsar at 10:10pm. The return flight will take-off from Amritsar at 11:25pm and arrive KLIA at 7:30am in the following morning.
Expressing their jubilation at this development, Gumtala stated, “We’ve advocated tirelessly for increased connectivity to Amritsar, and Malaysia Airlines’ decision is a testament to Amritsar’s potential as a tourism and business hub. The diaspora will now have multiple options to travel on different airlines, with shorter travel times, cost savings and avoiding the hassle of traveling via Delhi Airport.”
The addition of Malaysia Airlines strengthens the air link between Punjab in northern India and Southeast Asia, connecting Melbourne, Sydney, Perth, Adelaide, Auckland, Bangkok, Phuket, Hong Kong and Manila within 2-3 hours via KLIA. Amritsar, known for the Harmandir Sahib, will become the second Indian city after Delhi to host three Malaysia airlines – Air Asia X, Batik Air, and Malaysia Airlines. The development is expected to further boost tourism in the region and benefit the Punjabi diaspora in Malaysia, Australia, New Zealand and other countries, said Kamra.
Gumtala and Kamra emphasized that it is now imperative for the Punjab Government to recognize and capitalize on the airport’s true potential, as acknowledged by airlines worldwide. They pointed out that the absence of a dedicated bus service connecting the airport with the city center and other cities in Punjab highlights the State government’s neglect of fundamental needs. Furthermore, despite its significant contribution to Punjab’s economic development, the airport has seen minimal promotional efforts from successive state governments.
Presently, the airport maintains direct international connections with cities including London, Birmingham, Milan, Rome, Dubai, Sharjah, Doha, Singapore and Kuala Lumpur through airlines including, Air India, Air India Express, IndiGo, SpiceJet, Qatar Airways, Scoot, Batik Air, AirAsia X and Neos Airlines.