The much-awaited terminal 3 of New Delhi's Indira Gandhi International Airport finally becomes operational today, with Air India's Boeing B777-200LR flight from New York via Washington becoming the first aircraft to dock at one of many aerobridges at the new integrated terminal at 4.45 pm.
Passengers will be taken from the 'terminal process proving flights', a way to reaffirm the operational readiness and also affording an opportunity to all stakeholders including airlines, ground handlers, aviation oil companies, flight caterers, air traffic control, concessionaires, duty-free shops, airport operator and statutory agencies like immigration, customs, security, to carry out their functions in the complete turnaround of an actual flight, officials said.
Nine 'terminal process proving flights' will arrive or depart from T3 on 14 and 15 July, seven on Wednesday and two on Thursday. On 15 July, the world's largest passenger aircraft - an Airbus A-380 of Emirates Airlines - will arrive and depart from T3. The aircraft will land on the country's longest and A-380 compatible runway around 2.50 pm and depart at 5.50 pm.
The proving flights will check operational readiness of all the agencies like the airlines, ground handling agencies, aviation oil companies, air traffic control (ATC), flight caterers, concessionaires, duty-free shops, airport operator and statutory agencies like customs, immigration, and the Central Industrial Security Force in carrying out their designated tasks.
The private airport operator Delhi International Airport Ltd. (DIAL), along with around 450 personnel from 13 airlines and other agencies associated with ground handling, screening and baggage handling at T3, conducted a full trial of all the operations on Tuesday.
DIAL said its customer service executives will be available at both Terminal 2 and Terminal 3 to guide passengers. A regular, free shuttle service will be available from Terminal 2 to Terminal 3 to transport any passengers who may have reached Terminal 2 by mistake.