Arriving at the new Samhabad airport in Hyderabad is a different experience. Earlier, the Hyderabad airport used to be a pain for international arrivals. Crammed up space during immigration and customs process used to test the patience of people. There used to be very few immigration counters with long lines. The baggage claim process used to be laborious.
Now, at the new airport, things have changed. Five minutes after disembarking from the airplane, I stood in the immigration queue for a couple of minutes before I am attended to. My passport is a handwritten one, so it took a couple of more minutes for the immigration officer to type the details like passport number and expiry date. Even with all that, I am out of the immigration counters within five minutes I entered the lines. There are more counters now than earlier.
After immigration counters, I found a very well maintained duty free shop. I didn’t buy any liquor during my transit, so I went ahead and bought a couple of bottles of Johnny Walker. I found the price to be cheaper than other international airports and the best thing is I don’t have to carry these bottles during my flight. I didn’t check the prices of other duty free items like perfumes and chocolates though. Very courteous staff in the duty free shop make my buying experience a pleasant one.
The customs check is smooth too. I was bringing some family jewellery and I was briefly stopped by the officer to check it. But I was not harassed to pay any duty.
In addition to these, the facilities like carts, restrooms, prepaid taxi, etc. are very well planned in this new airport.
My travel from airport to home is time consuming though, even in the middle of the night. However, I am willing to bear that for the nicities I am getting at the new airport.
Good to see at least someone post something good on the Shamshabad airport. People have never missed the oppurtunity to lament on it! The other side of the coin has never received importance.