Jolly Grant Airport (IATA: DED, ICAO: VIDN), also known as Dehradun Airport, is a vital domestic airport serving Dehradun, the capital of Uttarakhand, India. Strategically located about 25 kilometers southeast of Dehradun city, Jolly Grant Airport plays a crucial role in facilitating air travel to and from the Garhwal region of Uttarakhand. currently  3 Airports in Uttarakhand are commercial operational.

As the sole operational airport in Uttarakhand, Jolly Grant Airport provides invaluable air connectivity to the hilly state, especially the Garhwal region. For over three decades now, it has served as a gateway by air for locals and tourists visiting the holy Himalayan pilgrimage centers of HaridwarRishikeshKedarnath and more.

Uttarakhand Global Investors Summit

Overview of Jolly Grant Airport

Jolly Grant Airport is a prominent domestic airport situated in the district of Dehradun, Uttarakhand. Named after the nearby village of Jolly Grant, it is located about 25 kilometers southeast of Dehradun city.

Jolly Grant Airport serves as the sole operational public airport in the state of Uttarakhand and provides vital air connectivity to the hilly state, especially the Garhwal region. It primarily caters to domestic air travel demand.

With the IATA code DED and ICAO code VIDNJolly Grant Airport plays a crucial role in facilitating tourism, pilgrimage and overall economic growth of Uttarakhand by connecting it to major cities across India by air.

Importance of Jolly Grant Airport in Uttarakhand

As the sole operational airport in UttarakhandJolly Grant Airport holds immense significance for the state. Some key reasons for its importance are:

  • Connectivity for Garhwal Region: The airport provides invaluable air connectivity to the Garhwal region of Uttarakhand which is difficult to access by road.
  • Tourism Growth: It acts as an air gateway for tourists headed to popular hill stations and pilgrimage sites like HaridwarRishikeshKedarnath etc. thereby driving tourism growth.
  • Access to Himalayas: The airport provides direct air access to the foothills of Himalayas for adventure tourism.
  • Medical Emergencies: It enables swift air evacuation of patients during medical emergencies from remote, inaccessible areas.
  • Economic Development: By enhancing air connectivity, it stimulates trade, investment and economic activity in the state.
  • International Connectivity: It holds potential for boosting international tourist footfalls in Uttarakhand once international flights are launched.

History and Development

Construction and Early Operations

  • Jolly Grant Airport was constructed in the 1980s to serve the growing air travel needs of Uttarakhand.
  • The airport site was carefully chosen by aviation experts near the village of Jolly Grant, about 25 kilometers from Dehradun.
  • Jolly Grant Airport was officially inaugurated on 17 November 1986 by the then Prime Minister of India, Rajiv Gandhi.
  • In the initial years, the airport had a small terminal building and a runway of length 6000 feet, capable of handling turboprop aircraft.
  • Air connectivity was limited to major metro cities like DelhiMumbaiKolkata and Chennai during the early years of operations.

Modernization Efforts and Expansion

  • Over the years, Jolly Grant Airport has undergone extensive modernization and upgrades to boost passengerhandling capacity and air connectivity.
  • The runway was expanded to 8000 feet in 1997 and further extended to 9000 feet in 2008 enabling bigger jets and increased operations.
  • Terminal facilities, check-in counters, baggage handling, and other infrastructure has been consistently improved.
  • A new integrated terminal building was constructed and inaugurated in October 2021 with enhanced capacity.
  • More domestic airlines like SpiceJetIndiGoAir India have launched flights providing connections to many more cities.
  • With growing passenger footfalls, further expansion works are planned including a new terminal and longer secondary runway.

Infrastructure and Facilities

Terminal Buildings

  • Jolly Grant Airport currently has one modern terminal building that handles all domestic passenger operations.
  • Inaugurated in October 2021, the new integrated terminal building has been constructed at a cost of ₹353 crores.
  • It has a built-up area of 30,000 square meters with peak hour handling capacity of 1200 passengers.
  • The terminal building has 20 check-in counters, 5 baggage claim belts, and 6 passenger boarding bridges.
  • It also houses retail stores, food outlets, lounges, prayer hall, public facilities etc. for passenger convenience.

Runway and Apron Facilities

  • The airport has a single runway designated as Runway 06/24 measuring 9000 feet in length.
  • This enables smooth takeoff and landing of full-size narrow body jets like Airbus A320s and Boeing 737s.
  • The runway is equipped with an Instrument Landing System (ILS) and runway lighting for safe 24 hour operations.
  • Apart from the runway, the airport has a taxiway, apron, and 7 parking bays to handle flight operations efficiently.

Security Measures

  • Jolly Grant Airport has stringent security arrangements in place for passenger safety.
  • Security measures include multi-layered access control, CCTV cameras, baggage x-ray screening, pat downs, traffic management within the terminal, and other standard protocols.
  • Security personnel are extensively trained and experienced to identify and counter any threats or unruly behavior.
  • Full body scanners, under-vehicle surveillance systems, perimeter intrusion detection, and regular monitoring ensure high levels of security.

Airlines and Destinations

Domestic Flights

Jolly Grant Airport is served by major domestic airlines providing connectivity to key cities and travel hubs across India:

  • SpiceJet – India’s favourite budget airline connects Dehradun to DelhiMumbaiBengaluruChennaiKolkataHyderabadAhmedabad and more.
  • IndiGo – India’s largest airline by market share offers flights from Dehradun to DelhiMumbaiBengaluruKolkataChennaiPuneJaipurLucknow and other cities.
  • Air India subsidiary Alliance Air provides crucial air links from Dehradun to DelhiPuneJaipur.
  • Smaller carriers like Pawan Hans also offer connections to limited destinations.

Connectivity to Major Cities

Some major cities connected with scheduled domestic flights from Jolly Grant Airport Dehradun are:

  • Delhi – The national capital and a major transit hub.
  • Mumbai – The financial centre and India’s busiest airport.
  • Bengaluru – The technology hub of India.
  • Chennai – An important south Indian metro.
  • Kolkata – The cultural capital of eastern India.
  • Hyderabad – Home to IT giants and pharma companies.
  • AhmedabadPuneJaipurLucknow – Key commercial cities of west and north India.

Future Expansion Plans

To cater to rising passenger demand and enhance both domestic and international connectivity from UttarakhandJolly Grant Airport has future expansion plans lined up:

  • Constructing a new expanded terminal building with 8 passenger boarding bridges.
  • Building a new secondary runway measuring 4000m x 45m.
  • Getting customs and immigration facilities to enable international flight operations.
  • Getting night landing facilities for enhanced connectivity.
  • Introducing direct flights to major travel destinations like SrinagarJammuLehSingaporeDubai etc.

Location and Accessibility

Proximity to Dehradun and Nearby Tourist Destinations

JollyGrant Airport is strategically located about 25 km southeast of Dehradun city center.

  • It is conveniently accessible from Dehradun which is well-connected via road and rail to major north Indian cities.
  • The airport’s location allows good connectivity to popular hill stations like Mussoorie (77 km away) and Rishikesh (43 km away).
  • Other top tourist destinations like Haridwar (41 km) and Kedarnath (221 km) are also within easy reach.

Transportation Options to and from the Airport

  • Jolly Grant Airport is connected to Dehradun city by a 4-lane highway which takes about 40 minutes.
  • Radio taxi services like Ola and Uber offer rides between the airport and Dehradun or nearby areas.
  • Local taxi and auto-rickshaw services are also available for airport transfers.
  • Dehradun city has regular bus services to and from Jolly Grant Airport terminal.
  • Many hotels and resorts in Dehradun provide airport shuttle service for their guests.

Parking

  • Jolly Grant Airport offers convenient parking facilities for passengers right outside the terminal building.
  • The paved vehicle parking area can accommodate around 300 cars and 50 coaches at a time.
  • Parking charges are nominal with car parking rates ranging from ₹30 for 30 minutes to ₹150 for 24 hours.
  • Separate two-wheeler parking slots are also available.
  • For long-term parking, passengers can opt for economical remote parking a little distance away.

Tourism and Economic Impact

Role of Jolly Grant Airport in Promoting Tourism

  • Jolly Grant Airport plays a vital role in facilitating tourism growth in Uttarakhand by enhancing air connectivity.
  • It provides direct air access for tourists headed to popular destinations like RishikeshHaridwarMussoorie as well as Char Dham sites.
  • The enhanced connectivity helps attract more tourists, enable repeat and longer visits, and makes travel efficient.
  • Domestic and foreign tourist can easily reach Uttarakhand via flights landing at Jolly Grant Airport Dehradun.
  • This boosts tourism potential of the state and results in economic benefits for the local population.

Economic Benefits to the Region

  • By improving air connectivity to UttarakhandJolly Grant Airport stimulates the local economy and development.
  • Enhanced tourist footfalls create income and jobs for locals associated with the tourism industry.
  • Better connectivity attracts trade, industries, investments into the state leading to economic growth.
  • The high-growth aviation sector also creates many direct and indirect jobs related to the airport ecosystem.
  • Tourism and businesses facilitated by the airport contribute taxes, revenues for the state’s economy.

Special Services and Assistance

Facilities for Physically Challenged Passengers

Jolly Grant Airport provides the following facilities for physically challenged passengers:

  • Dedicated wheelchairs and friendly assistance by staff
  • Lifts, ramps and special access provisions at terminal building
  • Reserved parking spaces near departure and arrival gates
  • Customized buggy services between terminal and aircraft
  • Accessible washrooms and public facilities
  • Priority services at check-in, security, boarding

Additional Services Offered

Apart from regular facilities, Jolly Grant Airport also provides value-added services:

  • Porter services for luggage
  • Baby care room and feeding area
  • Free Wi-fi access at terminal
  • Executive lounge access
  • Temporary luggage storage
  • Medical and ambulance support
  • 24×7 Customer Care Centre
  • Food and accommodation assistance
  • FAX, Photocopy, STD/ISD booths

Nearby Tourist Attractions

List of Nearby Tourist Destinations

Some top tourist spots near Jolly Grant Airport Dehradun:

  • Rishikesh – Adventure capital and yoga hub (43 km)
  • Haridwar – Hindu holy city famous for ‘Ganga aarti’ (41 km)
  • Mussoorie – Queen of Hills, popular hill station (77 km)
  • Dhanaulti – Scenic hill resort amid forests (101 km)
  • Kedarnath – Revered Hindu temple and pilgrimage site (221 km)
  • Rajaji National Park – Known for elephants and tiger reserve (23 km)
  • Lansdowne – Quaint hillside town and cantonment (155 km)
  • Auli – Skiing and winter sports destination (271 km)

Distances from Jolly Grant Airport

The above destinations are well connected by road from Jolly Grant Airport located around 25 km southeast of Dehradun:

  • Rishikesh – 70 km
  • Haridwar – 66 km
  • Mussoorie – 102 km
  • Dhanaulti – 126 km
  • Kedarnath – 246 km
  • Rajaji National Park – 48 km
  • Lansdowne – 180 km
  • Auli – 296 km

Conclusion

Summary of Jolly Grant Airport’s Significance

To summarize, Jolly Grant Airport Dehradun serves an invaluable role as the sole operational public airport in Uttarakhand providing vital air connectivity. Its strategic location makes it easily accessible from Dehradun and nearby famous tourist destinations. Extensive infrastructure upgrades have bolstered its passenger handling capabilities and domestic connectivity over the years. By facilitating tourism and economic growth, Jolly Grant Airport has a massive positive impact on the state. With further expansion plans in place, its significance for Uttarakhand is set to grow manifold in the future.

Future Outlook and Potential Developments

As Uttarakhand’s air traffic grows, Jolly Grant Airport is gearing up for major capacity enhancement and connectivity boost. With a new expanded terminal, secondary runway and extended flight operations on the cards, it is poised to serve as an efficient modern airport.

Introduction of customs and immigration facilities would also pave the way for international flights from Dehradun giving a fillip to tourism. Better rail/road connectivity to the airport, remote check-ins and technological upgrades like self bag-drop kiosks, biometrics, IoT, blockchain, AI etc. can significantly enhance passenger experience.

The future outlook is highly promising for Jolly Grant Airport to emerge as a world-class airport that unlocks Uttarakhand’s immense tourism and economic potential.