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Were he still around, Hercules would be able to add a thirteenth labour to his collection. While the online checkin experience was much like any other, actually getting on a domestic flight in India takes some perseverance and you need to learn to love having your papers examined every five minutes. While I fully appreciate heightened sensitivity around security, this was just ridiculous and we must have shown our boarding pass, passport and stamped hand baggage stamp eight times before we got on the plane – three times on the jetway!
Udaipur Airport is relatively new and the airside departure area had a curiously well stocked book shop, Ayervedic pharmacy, and a snack shop selling drinks and large packets of biscuits and sweets.
Our flight was 45 minutes late and in their lack of wisdom someone thought it would be quicker if everyone was let on at once. Well that worked! But it did at least provide more opportunities to flash our papers a few more times. Once on board the crew were proactive, friendly and helped passengers stow their luggage quickly.
The seat pitch appeared quite generous. The seat was not particularly comfortable as the back lacked padding although the cushion and headrest were supportive. Each seat had an individual IFE screen and three films were showing on a loop for the one hour flight, including Black Swan – which seemed an odd choice, although provided some diversion. There was also a moving map.
Shortly after take-off sandwiches (not sure what – thought best not to risk it) and cherry cake were served on a tray. Bottles of water and tea were also provided, the latter actually quite good. Announcements in Hindi and English were clear and to the point.
The flight was extremely smooth and we were on the ground in under an hour. Another very long walk to the baggage carousel and a short wait.
All the effort was in the departure process. The flight itself was smooth and uneventful, with a professional feel about it. NB the checked luggage allowance for domestic flights is only 15KG. Our shopping splurge meant that we had to pay approximately £100 in excess baggage.