If you haven't been to the Mumbai airport in a long while, know that the airport was leased to a private operator in 2006 and has since undergone major renovations and upgrades. Among the major renovations were new domestic terminals along with a new integrated international terminal, Terminal 2, which opened in February 2014.
Airport Code, Location, and Contact Information
- Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport Mumbai (BOM). It's named after a renowned Maharashtrian warrior king.
- Airport helpline: 022 66851010
- Website: https://www.csia.in/
- The international terminal is located at Sahar in Andheri East while the domestic terminal is in Santa Cruz, 30 kilometers (19 miles) and 24 kilometers (15 miles) north of the city respectively.
Know Before You Go
It takes about one and a half to two hours to Colaba, a central neighborhood in Mumbai. However, travel time is much less early in the morning or late at night when traffic is lighter.
Mumbai airport's domestic terminal has three structures: 1A, 1B, and 1C.
- Terminal 1A - Closed from March 15, 2016.
- Terminal 1B - Used for GoAir, IndiGo and Spice Jet arrivals and departures.
- Terminal 1C - Links Terminal 1A and 1B. Is a holding area for passengers before departure. It also has a food court.
Mumbai Airport Terminal 2 (International): Terminal 2 receives all international departures and arrivals.
In addition, full-service domestic airlines (Vistara, Air India, and Jet Airways) use the terminal for their domestic flights. Jet Airways shifted its domestic operations to Terminal 2 on March 15, 2016.
Terminal 2 has four levels as follows:
- Level 1 - Transport (prepaid taxis, car rentals, and hotel reservations).
- Level 2 - Arrivals
- Level 3 - Domestic Departures
- Level 4 - International Departures
Unlike other Indian airports, security checks take place before immigration at Terminal 2—not after. This will enable passengers to place items that fail the security check into their check-in baggage. One of the highlights of Terminal 2 is a grand museum that showcases Indian art on a long wall. The roof of Terminal 2 is also unique. It's been inspired by dancing white peacocks.
- Terminal 2 has 188 check-in counters, 60 immigration counters for departing passengers and 76 immigration counters for arriving passengers, 52 boarding bridges (up from 20), 47 escalators, 73 elevators, 10 baggage carousels, 21,000 square meters of retail space, and a parking lot for 5,000 cars.
- Free wireless Internet is available in both domestic and international terminals.
- Passengers with special needs are catered for by reserved parking slots, ramps, lifts, and bathrooms. Wheelchairs and attendants are available inside the terminals.
- Money exchange counters and ATMs inside the terminals.
- Postal services at the arrivals hall of Terminal 2, arrivals hall of Terminal 1A, and departures area (just before security check) of Terminal 1B.
There are designated parking located near all the terminals, near to the pick-up and drop off points for passengers. Frequent travelers have the option of buying a monthly parking pass. Motorbike parking is also available at all terminals. The domestic Terminal has 750 spaces, while the International Terminal holds 1500 slots for autos.
Rates start from 160 rupees for up to 30 minutes and increase to 1,200 rupees for between eight and 24 hours. Do note that the airport does not allow free pickup of passengers from the arrivals area. You will need to pay the minimum parking fee even for a quick stop.
- The rates for parking are the same at the domestic terminal, although the terminal does have a free pickup area.
Cars and taxis can directly access the airport from Sahar Elevated Road, which provides seamless connectivity from the Western Express Highway. Motorbikes, auto-rickshaws, and buses will need to take a dedicated lane through the existing Sahar Road. In addition, those vehicles aren't permitted to enter the departures or arrivals areas.
Visitors have several choices getting to and from the airport. Among the options are the suburban railway, buses, and even auto-rickshaws. While these are low budget, the public transportation system can be overwhelming for many travelers, and so a taxi or car service will make for a less stressful journey.
Transport and Hotel Transfers
The easiest way to get to your hotel is by taking a prepaid taxi from Level 1 of the new Terminal T2. Luggage charges are additional. Hotel pick-ups are available from Level 2. Prepaid taxis are also available at the domestic terminal. The counter is located near the exit of the arrivals area. Bus services are also available from the airport.
Alternatively, Viator offers convenient private airport transfers. They can be easily booked online.
Where to Eat and Drink
There are a wide array of food options for any budget at the Mumbai airport.
- Cafe Chino: A low budget option for sandwiches and drinks.
- Chai Time: Locally sourced teas.
- Ultra Bar: A swank locale to grab a cocktail or beer.
- Curry Kitchen: A mid-priced choice for north Indian cuisine and chaats.
- Indian Kebab Grill: Freshly made meats, with vegetarian options as well.
- Baker Street: A low budget pastry and coffee shop.
- Olive Bistro: An Italian mid-priced restaurant.
- Street Foods: An assortment of meals highlighting the street food of India.
- The Beer Cafe: Grab a brew and a snack—the cafe has 10 varieties of tap beers and over 50 international beer brands.
Terminal 2 has a number of airport lounges for passengers.
- GVK Lounge: for first class and business class passengers. It's located on Level 3 and 4 of Terminal 2. Facilities include concierge, business center, library, spa and shower, smoking zone, food, and beverages.
- CIP Lounge: for "Commercially Important Passengers", as determined by the airlines. It's located on Level 3 and 4 of Terminal 2. Luxury seating, wireless Internet, and reading materials are provided.
- Loyalty Lounge: for holders of eligible MasterCard, Visa, Priority Pass, Airport Angle, Lounge Key, Diners and Amex cards. Paid access to the lounge is also available. It's located on Level 3 of Terminal 2. Facilities include a buffet, unlimited alcoholic beverages, reading materials, and wireless Internet.
- Pranaam Lounge: a less glamorous option for everyday passengers who wish to avail of lounge facilities. Buffet, nonalcoholic beverages, wireless Internet, baby care room, luggage storage, reading materials are provided.
The international terminal is busiest at night, while the domestic terminal is busy during the day. Delays from runway congestion are a big problem at Mumbai airport. Flights are often delayed 20-30 minutes because of this.
Mumbai airport often causes confusion to travelers because both the international and domestic terminals, while being located in separate suburbs, are named Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport. If your ticket for a domestic flight states that it's departing from the international airport, this does not mean the international terminal. Make sure you check the terminal number and go to the correct one.
Unfortunately, the new Terminal 2 is plagued by mosquitoes, so do be prepared to deal with them if you're traveling through there at night.