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India: Delhi's International Airport: Need Current Info

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Mar 31st, 2012, 12:58 PM
  #1
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India: Delhi's International Airport: Need Current Info

We are a family of 11 returning from Delhi on 3 different flights - 200am, 4:30 am, 8:30 am- and our tour company will drop us off after dinner. I can't find accurate, current info on the net about the airport. I know it opened in 2010 but have heard that you can't go there until just before your flight. Have read you cannot enter until 6? ,5? 3? hours before your flight. There is a wating lounge across the street from the T-3 but that info may be outdated because it sounded dreadful. We know about the Eaton Smart Hotel in the airport and that is an option. Just want to know....what is best advice for us. Have read about the Pods but need details on when we can enter the airport and then get to the international departure waiting area. Thanks so much.
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Mar 31st, 2012, 08:43 PM
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i think your info is mostly incorrect... this new airport is a world class operation, readily open...

my concern would be my check-in... most airline counters do not open more than 3 hours before a scheduled flt... check with your airline
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Apr 1st, 2012, 01:59 PM
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I had a flight that left about 2 am and I arrived at 9:15 pm. No prob with going in. I didnt see a watiing area across the street and as rhkkmk said, i think that info is based ont he previous international airport.

If i understanding correctly, you are ALL going to the airport together, but hen have separate flights????

those on the 8:30 flight should look into the sleeping pods or "hotel" rooms. BOOK EARLY for the Eaton hotel--they are full MONTHS in advance.

WHY does the tour company have to drop you off so early?? You could be using that time to relax in a nice hotel a very short ride from the airport (or not) Maybe get two rooms and divide p by "departure time"??

One more thing: before you enter the main terminal, for security, there will be someone at the entry checking ID and tickets, so have them handy immediately. (I wish they did this at all countries' airports)
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Apr 1st, 2012, 05:32 PM
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Good info. We are a family -- brother and sisters with kids/mates and live in 3 locations in US. Thus the 3 different flights. WE'll be coming from Jaipur so I think we'll do dinner and then after 9 have tour company drop us at the terminal. Do not want to book a hotel off the property that we will have to get taxi back to terminal so Eaton sounds like the best choice. I just wasn't sure that they would let us enter until a set time before departure. And good point about having all paperwork ready to show. Thanks!
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Apr 4th, 2012, 11:05 PM
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I fly in and out of Delhi airport on about a monthly basis, so here are my thoughts:

1. Officially the rule is that you are not allowed to enter any Indian airport until 3 hours before your flight. There are armed army officers at each door checking your tickets and ID. For non-Indians, I believe this rule is not as rigidly enforced (witness Calinurse's ability to enter at 9 pm for a 2 am departure). So if for some reason your whole group wants to arrive very early, I would not worry overly about it unless you or members of your family are Indian/NRI, in which case you may get hassled. (You can buy a “visitors” ticket to enter the terminal for about US 50 cents, however you can’t bring luggage in on that ticket. It is designed to keep travelers out, and let family members in to see off departing passengers.)

2. The group departing at 8:30 am should really consider getting a hotel room for the night, in which case the rest of you could take advantage of it for a few hours to relax, keep luggage etc. If you can’t get into the Eaton, then have the tour drop you off at a neaby hotel, and then each group can take a taxi to the airport as their departure time approaches. I would think the small cost would be worth avoiding the hassle of herding 11 people through check-in, security and Immigration, and dealing with a long night at the airport. Arriving 2 hours before departure should be plenty of time. There are several hotels close to the airport which would work. See some suggestions below.

3. The new airport does have the Eaton hotel and the pods for sleeping, I have not used them and I suspect they may be fully booked at most times. The main website for the airport is http://www.newdelhiairport.in/traveller.aspx and you should be able to link to the hotel and the pods to make a booking. There are some paid lounges that might work see http://www.plaza-network.com/ and look at New Delhi, the ones with showers and sleeping faciltieis may not yet be open, but check with the operator to see if they will be open during your visit.

4. Otherwise, there are a good number of restaurants and shops, but I am not sure there will be a whole lot open after about 1 am. Although there are a number of flights which depart late in the evening from Delhi, in my experience, most of the restaurants will close between 1-2 am. There are plenty of chairs and loungers for sleeping/resting.

There are several hotels under construction at the airport, but I don’t think they will open unitl the end of this year. Not sure when your trip will be. Otherwise, for hotels close to the airpott there is the Raddison (there are two, either would work, the one called the “New Delhi is not in New Delhi but is outside the centre and about 5 minutes from the airport, see http://www.radisson.com/). The Grand Hotel is quite close to the airport (was originally a Hyatt) see http://www.thegrandnewdelhi.com (There is also a Grand Hotel Intercontinental in Connaught Circus in downtown New Delhi, so don't confuse the two.) The Uppals Orchid Hotel is OK a good location for the airport, rooms can be uneven IMO, see http://www.theorchidhotelnewdelhi.com/. There is a brand new Kempinski hotel about 5 minutes from the airport, see http://www.kempinski.com/en/delhi/Pages/Welcome.aspx, on the expensive side.

There is also a Westin not too far from the airport see http://www.starwoodhotels.com/westin...ropertyID=1710
And the Trident is also about 15 minutes and is quite nice, see http://www.tridenthotels.com/gurgaon/index.asp. For a splurge, try the new Oberoi next to the Trident, see http://www.oberoihotels.com/oberoi_gurgaon/index.asp

A bit further out, I think the Country Inn & Suites Gurgaon is a solid little 4 star hotel, rates are usually good, see http://www.countryinns.com/hotels/indcigs. Near to it is the Courtyard Marriott in Gurgaon see http://www.marriott.com/hotels/trave...tyard-gurgaon/. The Crowne Plaza Gurgaon (http://www.ichotelsgroup.com/) or the Park Hotel in Gurgaon (http://www.theparkhotels.com) are also good.
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Apr 5th, 2012, 04:56 AM
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Get the hotel! We jsut returned from Delhi 2 days ago and arrived 3 hours early for our international flights. This was plenty early, and I can't imagine what in the world you'd do for all of those extra hours. It does take time to process all of the people for a flight, but you will be bored out of your mind if you plan to sit in the airport for that many hours.

Our flight departed at 11:00 pm, and we'd taken a train into Delhi that arrived a bit after 3:00 pm. We had a driver pick us up and take us around for a while to shop and have dinner. We got to the airport at 8:00 and had lots of time to kill in the airport.
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Apr 5th, 2012, 06:00 AM
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GREAT info. this is what I was looking for. We are considering one of these hotels and the Eaton Smart's hourly rates. Thank you for taking the time to give me this feedback,.
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Apr 19th, 2012, 12:25 AM
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Getting a booking at the Eaton Smart Hotels will be difficult as you can enter the security area not before 6 hours prior to departure. However, if one is flying in by an inland flight, you could gain entry, by entering from the gate to the international wing, WITHOUT exiting. Once you have exited, you can't get excess to the premises. The best is to give the Eaton folks a ring when you land and they will depute someone to bring you in hassle free. The hotel is indeed very plush & staff cooperative.
Happy travels!
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May 20th, 2012, 07:54 PM
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We learned that we needed to make reservations at the Domestic Terminal's Eaton Smart Hotel that just opened recently. The International is only for people in transit internationally. All that makes sense. So we will go about 6 hours before our flight and get showers there and a brief nap. Our travel company was able to book these rooms for us. They are learning too since it is all so new.
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May 22nd, 2012, 12:30 AM
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Good info, thanks for the update, Byronelaine
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Jun 5th, 2016, 12:25 PM
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Les
 
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Here's our experience at the Delhi airport.

We had just finished our 11-day India visit (after first spending 10 days in Japan), and we decided to sleep-in at our hotel in Delhi on the last day (we had an evening flight back to the U.S. - around 9:00 PM). We arranged to be picked up at the hotel at check-out time (2:00 PM), and opted to go directly to the airport, where we were going to relax in the United Club Lounge, do some shopping in the airport, and have dinner prior to boarding our flight.

We were denied entry into the terminal when we arrived, and were told that we could not enter until 4 hours prior to our flight. We were directed to a small guarded waiting room with only a vending machine, to kill the 2 hours or so before we could enter the terminal (we had no choice - our ride was gone and the airport was a long way from Delhi).

At the allocated time, we were allowed to enter the terminal, at which point we asked directions to the United Club lounge. and were told that we would first have to check-in with the airline and pass through security to get to the lounge (and food, and shopping area).

But (you guessed it!), check-in for our flight would not open for another hour and a half. So we just milled about the main departure hall until we could check in for our flight.

We're experienced travelers, but we hadn't foreseen this kind of situation. Had we known about these rules in advance (and there's some indication from the above posts that not everybody agrees as to what these rules are), we would have done some additional touring in Delhi prior to going to the airport.
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Jun 5th, 2016, 03:47 PM
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I stayed at the Eaton domestic last June after arriving at the international terminal. I was not allowed to go back to the international terminal to meet my son who came in on a later flight. It was like getting into Fort Knox (which I did in my youth).

I was told that the Eaton is only for passengers transiting between international and domestic flights. I was required to give them my ticket numbers when I made the reservation.

You do not indicate whether your group is driving or flying from Jaipur which will make a difference at the Eaton. That being said it was a great solution for me as a woman alone. I felt very safe and secure. The staff met my son's plane about eight hours later and brought him to our room.

The international terminal has a spa/shower facility on the lowest level. It was a lifesaver on our last day as I was able to shower and change into clean clothes prior to my long flight home.
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Jun 5th, 2016, 03:52 PM
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We stayed at the Lemon Tree in Gurgaon in 2009. My husband had flown to Stockholm in the morning of our departure date. My flight back to the U.S. didn't leave until the evening, so I kept the room for the day so I'd have a base of operations. It was fine, although the Eaton is newer.
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Jun 5th, 2016, 03:57 PM
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You will go through Indian security, then another security check when boarding if flying on an American carrier.
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Jun 5th, 2016, 03:59 PM
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You can't get into the Eaton six hours before your flight because you can't access the terminal until three hours before your flight.
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Jun 5th, 2016, 05:29 PM
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This thread is over 4 years old. So I'm assuming the OP and her family have made it back okay.
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