The airport connects Kathmandu with Birgunj the major trade transit point with India
Simara Airport is a domestic airport in Pipara, Simara of Nepal. Operated by the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal it is located 16 km away from Birgunj, which is one of the major trading routes between Nepal and India.
The airport serves Jitpur Simara a sub-metropolitan city that is regarded as the youngest sub-metropolitan city in the country. Simara Airport plays an important role in connecting Kathmandu and Birgunj. It is also the gateway to cross the border to Patna and Kolkata in India.
As Birgunj is close to the border town of Raxaul in India, various goods are imported through this route. The airport is purposefully used in case of natural calamities and disasters when ground transport is not accessible and also lies in the path of international flight operation.
Located in close proximity to the fifth largest city of Nepal, Birgunj, the airport was built in July 1958. The airport is among those initial airports where flights were conducted by Nepal Airlines in their early days.
Not long ago the airport also introduced night fights which officially commenced on September 15, 2018.
Airlines and Destinations
Buddha Air is the only airline operating direct and daily flights to Simara. There are around 6 flights from Kathmandu to Simara. The duration of the Simara to Kathmandu flight is 20 minutes. Nepal Airlines also conducts direct flights from and to Kathmandu.
The surface of the runway is paved with asphalt and has a length of 4000 ft. After the proposal of the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN), private airlines like Yeti Airlines, and Shree airlines have already commenced night flights to various destinations around the country. The IATA and ICAO codes for Simara Airport are SIF and VNSI respectively.
Perched at an elevation of 450 feet it is the most strategic domestic airport of the country for two reasons. One, it is the nearest airport only 63 kms far from Kathmandu; Raxaul, an Indian city is only 20 kilometers away from the airport and the other being the quick rescue terminal for natural calamities that the terai plains face during the monsoon when all the roads remain blocked.
Though not big the airport premises consist of one departure, one operation terminal and one arrival terminal shed, along with a few shops available around the airport. Being the gateway to Patna and Kolkata, the airport makes great economic contribution to Nepal.
Complied by Rina Kumari Mandal a content writer at Nepaltraveller.