As the aviation sector is spreading its wings by adding more passengers, destinations day after day, the airports are also getting swankier, larger and smarter. Most of the important airports in the country have some of the finest lounges – Mumbai, Bengaluru, Delhi and Hyderabad have some great lounges. With airports handling more passengers and cargo, they need more space. And with cities expanding, there’s no space for an airport in the city. What that has done is, airports have become larger but at an expense to distance and time. Due to this, the modes of reaching the airport on a budget isn’t an option always. For instance in Hyderabad, I always prefer traveling to the airport on my scooter when going on short trips. But what about other cities ? In this post, I’ll talk about the Kochi airport bus service and all you need to know. And Why did I go to Kochi ? It all starts here.
Kochi Airport Bus Service – Routes & Timings
The buses to and from the Kochi airport is operated by KURTC. The buses originate from Terminal 1 and pass through each terminal before heading to the city. Most of the Kochi Airport Bus reach Ernakulam via different routes. For my journey I was supposed to travel to Fort Kochi which is roughly about 40 kms from the Airport. It’s beyond Kochi for all of you who don’t know.
My flight was scheduled to land at 0600hrs at Kochi and the first bus from the airport was at 0630hrs. And that’s why I didn’t have any checked in luggage. Else I would have surely missed the bus and the next bus to Fort Kochi was only at 0830hrs. Luckily the bus was delayed by 5-10 mins and I got it easily.
The bus goes through various destinations like Eddapally, Aluva, Ernakulam Railway Station, MG Road, Vyttila and Fort Kochi. The detailed routes are mentioned in the images above and side. Since I was in a hurry, I couldn’t click the image of the schedule. Thanks to my friend Shrinidhi for the above photo. You can read his post on Cochin Airport Bus Service and other means to reach the city here.
Where to find the Kochi Airport Bus ?
If you are travelling to Kochi from anywhere in India and are on a domestic flight, then chances are very high that you will find it right outside the exit of terminal 2. The board for the bus stop isn’t facing the exit which means you cannot find it easily. You need to walk straight out of the terminal building and you will come across the KSRTC bus bay. Wait there for the bus to arrive.
Cost of Kochi Airport Bus Service
If you want to reach to any part of the Kochi city from Kochi airport, you can either take an Auto rickshaw, book a cab or take the Kochi Airport Bus. The cab charges are not going be anywhere between 800-1000 Rs which is quite high. (Until unless someone else is paying for it 😉) The Kochi Airport Bus service is the cheapest way to reach anywhere from Kochi airport. When I wanted to go to Fort Kochi from Kochi Airport via bus, I paid only Rs 88 ! That’s insanely cheap. The bus will drop you at the tip of Fort Kochi from where you can take a ferry via Vypin and go back to the airport (seriously ? Why would you do that !)
Disadvantage of Kochi Airport Bus service
Apart from being the most convenient and the cheapest way to travel from Kochi Airport to the city, there are a few disadvantages of Kochi Airport Bus service.
First, the Kochi airport bus service is not non stop / dedicated. And this means more time spent on the road. The bus – though being AC & low floor – is like any other city bus which stops at various bus stops on the way. Even when someone shows the hand the bus would stop. I experienced this while going to airport from fort Kochi. People were getting down on the way and getting in. At one point there were about 5-8 people standing ! Passengers travelling to the airport were hardly 10.
Second disadvantage is that because this is like the local bus, there is no special area to put your luggage. I remember the Airport bus in Bengaluru had that the last time I visited. This means that if you are having large and heavy luggage and are travelling during peak time, it’s going to be tough.
Third – again because it isn’t a dedicated airport bus – it takes a considerable time to reach the airport / city when traveling during the rush hours. For instance I had a flight at 2205hrs, I took the bus at 1730hrs from Fort Kochi and reached the Kochi airport at sharp 2000hrs.
Everything aside, Kochi Airport bus is cheapest way to travel
Putting everything aside, the cheapest way to travel to and fro the Kochi Airport is using the Kochi Airport bus service. The service is reliable and runs on time. If there’s anything that I have missed or you have anything to add, please mention in the comments below or tweet to me at @Atulmaharaj