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Friday, 06 December, 2019, 10 : 30 AM [IST]

Somon Air hopeful of adding second frequency between Dushanbe and Delhi soon

Tajikistan’s only international airline, Somon Air, which launched its Dushanbe- Delhi operations with a single weekly flight from December 1, is keen to get the second frequency in place as early as possible. Speaking to media and to the travel trade after the first flight touched down in Delhi, Captain Thomas W Hallam II, CEO, Somon Air said that the second frequency is very important for the airline to get the right visibility and also help travellers travel to Tajikistan for shorter vacations. Captain Hallam said that they have applied for a second slot and hoping to have it in place by late January or early February.  

He said that the focus at Somon Air is to organise the air operations economically and efficiently and for that right frequency and using the right airplane is critical. The only IATA member airline in Tajikistan and the only one with IOSA certification to fly international, he said that Somon Air confers high priority to safety and best international business practices. “We have best people and best destinations to develop this market,” he added.

Apart from seasonal student traffic, the airline hopes to cater to strong Pharma and other business traffic as well as Medical Tourism demands from Tajikistan to India. “Tajikistan is an unspoiled area as far tourism is concerned which is safe and beautiful,” he added.

Calling the air service between Tajikistan and India “a new chapter in the bilateral relationship,” Sulton Rahimzoda, Ambassador of Tajikistan to India said that despite deep historical and cultural ties between the two countries, the tourism potential remained untapped because of the lack of direct air connectivity. Tajikistan is one of  the safest countries in the world with rich history, panoramic nature and friendly people, he added. Tajikistan is also one of the five countries in the world which has most simplified visa system, he informed. 

Interacting with Travelbiz Monitor, the Ambassador said that they would consider number of options like Visa on Arrival, Free Transit Visa at Dushanbe, etc. to make it simpler and easier for Indians. “This will help people to stay in Dushanbe for few hours before proceeding to other places in the surroundings,” he added.

Speaking on the occasion Gagan Malhotra, Executive Director of CHL  Limited and owner of Hilton Dushanbe explained the close proximity of the destination which is accessible by just over 2 hours flight. Historical connect, culture and hospitality, safety and security, friendly people, unspoilt beauty, etc. make Tajikistan an ideal leisure destination. “You can ski the entire day in Tajikistan at the cost of one Ski lift Europe,” he stated.

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