Bagdogra is the main Airport for North Bengal and Sikkim. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) code for Bagdogra is IXB. This used to be primarily an Indian Air Force base. Now the airforce base has mostly been shifted and the airport has gained substantially in prominance. The airport is located at a distance of 14 km from Siliguri, 125 km from Gangtok and 90 km from Darjeeling.
Bagdogra is also a small town in the outskirts of Siliguri, the major gateway to Darjeeling – Sikkim sector. The only Airport of the region is also here. So if you are travelling to North Bengal, Dooars, Darjeeling or Sikkim, Bagdogra would probably be where you will land first.
Bagdogra Airport is the only major airport for North Bengal and Sikkim. Originally it used to be a major Indian Air Force base and till the 90’s only a couple of civilian aircrafts used to land here. With changing time as the pressure of civil air traffic increased, the Air Force changed its base mostly to an exclusive Air Force base at Hasimara allowing more civilian flights to use this airport. Today it is primarily a civil airport with some air force activity still continuing. There is also a chopper service from the airport to Gangtok.
Bagdogra Airport received further fillip when it was declared an International airport as Druk airways started flying through this airport. Today all major airlines have regular flights to Bagdogra airport including Air India, Jet Airways, Spice Jet, Go Air and Druk Air.
The Airport currently has five aprons. Flights arrive and depart during the day between 10:00 Hours to 16:00 Hours. Night landing facility is still not available but discussion is on to introduce the same in the near future.
Flight to Bagdogra
Direct Flights are available from the airport to 3 domestic and 2 international destinations. Travellers from other cities may fly here with one stop over. Following is the flight information as on august 2012. Please visit specific airline sites for latest information on flight timing and details.
Bagdogra Town is about 11 kilometres from Siliguri, regular buses and auto-rickshaws ply on the route. There is also a railway station where rail bus has been introduced. There is a large market in the lower Bagdogra area which serves Indian and foreign goods for the armed forces personnel and people from Siliguri. The Bihar More is the hub of activity where the National Highway 31 divides. The main road goes towards Kolkata whereas National Highway 31C moves towards the Nepal Boarder of Panitanki via Naxalbari, the birthplace of Naxal movement in India.
The town is divided into two parts, Upper and Lower Bagdogra, the Upper area around NH31C beyond Bihar More is mostly residential. The Lower Bagdogra area apart from residences also has commercial establishments, schools, college, rail station etc. The original entrance to the Airport was also through this area but has now been shifted to a new entry point about 2 km ahead of Bihar More.