The airline commenced the Delhi-Dharamshala flight on March 26th.

IndiGo’s regional footprint in India was boosted further recently with the commencement of its flight between Delhi and the hillside town of Dharamshala in the state of Himachal Pradesh. The airline is just the third in the country to operate flights there, given the mountainous terrain and runway limitations, requiring smaller aircraft.

Delhi-Dharamshala flight

On March 26th, India’s largest airline IndiGo commenced flights from Delhi to Dharamshala – its 78th domestic and 104th overall destination. The destination marks the carrier’s entry into Himachal Pradesh, where it will deploy its ATR aircraft. Vinay Malhotra, Head of Global Sales, IndiGo, commented,

“We are extremely pleased to announce the launch of our operations from Dharamshala, the 78th domestic destination in the 6E network, making our way into the serene valleys of Himachal Pradesh … This move aims to bolster passenger traffic even further as we have witnessed a strong demand for connectivity to Himachal Pradesh. The direct flights from Delhi, will also connect Himachal Pradesh to the rest of the country and international destinations in Asia, Middle East, and Europe.”

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Flight path

A popular tourist destination, Dharamshala attracts plenty of visitors every year. It is home to the spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, and as such, holds significance as a Buddhist center. Along with various monasteries, Dharamshala also has the highest international cricket ground in the world.


IndiGo will have the following schedule for this service:

Flight No.







6E 7483




March 26th



6E 7484




March 26th



6E 7485



Mon, Tue, Thu, Fri

March 27th



6E 7486



Mon, Tue, Thu, Fri

March 27th



IndiGo ATR 72

Photo: WeChitra | Shutterstock

Given the tricky terrain and the short runway (with a length of around 4,500 feet), Dharamshala can only be accessed by smaller turboprop airplanes. IndiGo is using its ATR 72–600 planes to fly here and will compete directly for traffic with SpiceJet and Alliance Air, both of which connect the town with Delhi, with Alliance Air also offering a flight to Chandigarh and Shimla.

Staying competitive

IndiGo is still miles ahead of all other Indian carriers and commands more than half of the country’s domestic market share. And while its peak position is in no immediate danger, the airline realizes it is now operating in a highly altered aviation space.

With a new player like Akasa Air capturing 3% of India’s market in six to seven months and planning to fly internationally later this year along with an invigorated Air India, IndiGo is feeling challenged for the first time in years.

IndiGo A320neo Taxiing

Photo: Harsh – S / Shutterstock

But not the kind to take competition lightly, IndiGo has also been on a network expansion spree, starting several new city pairs recently, such as Pune-Dehradun and Kolhapur-Bengaluru. It also hosted a presentation at the analysts/investors meeting recently, where it said that its fleet could be as large as 350 by the end of the next financial year.

What are your views on this? Please leave your comments below.


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