LAHORE: The national carrier, Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) has commenced direct flights from Lahore to northern areas as the first flight carrying 153 passengers flew to Skardu, ARY News reported on Wednesday. The first direct flight departed from Lahore to Skardu, the junction of tourist destinations in northern areas of Pakistan. The national airline has achieved another milestone by announcing to connect different cities through enhanced flight operations. The PIA spokesperson announced earlier that the national flag carrier will operate two flights twice a week between Lahore and Skardu. The PIA will use Airbus A-320 aircraft for Skardu flight operation and the fare of one person will be Rs7500.
On March 26, Swat’s Saidu Sharif airport had welcomed the first flight on Friday, after a hiatus of 17 years. A Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) flight, PK-640, with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) Chief Minister Mahmood Khan, Aviation Minister Ghulam Sarwar and Communications Minister Murad Saeed and tourists on board, had reached the scenic valley at around 11 am. The flight took off from the Islamabad International Airport where a cake was cut to celebrate the resumption of the flight operations to the Saidu Sharif airport.
The Saidu Sharif airport had been non-operational since 2004 after the national flag carrier ceased to operate commercial flights to this destination. The national flag carrier plans to operate two flights from Lahore and Islamabad in a week. Established in 1978, the airport used to handle two flights a day from Islamabad and Peshawar.
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