Lukla Flights are operated from and to Manthali Airport from 1st October 2022
Due to the air traffic in the Tribhuvan international airport in Kathmandu, all the Lukla flights are rerouted from and to Manthali Airport, Ramechhap District of Nepal from the 1st October 2022.
The Civil aviation association of Nepal (CAAN) has decided to use Ramechhap (Manthali) Airport to fly to and from Lukla. The Civil aviation association of Nepal (CAAN) has informed that there is an increment in traffic congestion at Kathmandu Airport and the Lukla sector is the busiest domestic flights sectors in Nepal. So, to avoid traffic congestion and minimize the load of Tribhuvan International airport they have decided to operate all the Lukla flights from Manthali airport of Ramechhap for peak season.
The peak season for Nepal is March through May and October through November, during which Lukla flights are operated from Ramechhap/Manthali Airport. However, if you're traveling during the non-peak season (January, February, June, July, August, September, and December), Lukla flights are operated from Kathmandu airport.
Where in Manthali Airport?
The Manthali airport is located in the Ramechhap district of Nepal and it is the nearest airport to Kathmandu.
The Manthali Airport is located in the Tamakoshi River Valley in Manthali, the capital of Ramechhap District at an altitude of 474 m it is 132 km east of Kathmandu, and it takes about 4-5 hours to drive.
Manthali is a small town that doesn’t see many visitors and the accommodation facilities available in Manthali are very limited. The service level is basic with the large number of trekkers who will come here to catch their flights. So, it is highly likely that you not find accommodation in Manthali during the peak season.
Any effects on our treks?
This does not change anything on our scheduled treks, however, it is an inconvenience and adds a challenge to have to get up earlier and travel back and forth to Manthali airport.
What do we do?
So, We arrange a transfer from Kathmandu to Mantlai on the same day to catch a flight to Lukla. The flight to and from Lukla are mostly in the morning, So, we need to drive to Manthali airport from about 1:00 to 2:00 am (midnight) in the morning to catch the flights to Lukla.
What happens if the flights get canceled due to bad weather from Manthali Airport?
If a flight gets canceled due to bad weather or other reasons from Manthali airport, you will have the option to fly by helicopter which depends on demand and the number of trekkers who want to take a helicopter flight. The cost is from USD 500.00 USD minimum and may cost more per person per way as these will be chartered flights. So, we advise you to have USD 1000.00 extra money when you travel to Nepal for Everest Trek. We will refund the cost of the flight to Lukla (US $150.00 per person per way) if you have to take the helicopter flight.
If flights are canceled and it’s not possible even to take the helicopter flight, you will have the option of staying in Ramecchap or returning to Kathmandu and know that only basic accommodation is available in Ramecchap/Manthali. And, if you return to Kathmandu, need to leave the hotel again the next day at 1-2 am to try to catch the Lukla flight.
Is any better option available?
The best option to avoid the flight from Manthali is to take a chartered helicopter flight from Kathmandu to Lukla and return. The Helicopter flight is still available from Kathmandu Airport, and the cost depends on the number of people etc… as the cost of the Helicopter is shared between the passengers. Normally, if you inform us in advance, we can look/find other people to share the helicopter flight cost, and when we have enough numbers for the helicopter flight, the cost is USD 500.00 per person per way. The cost of the Regular flight (US $150.00) will be refunded which means you need the extra US $350.00 per person per way to fly on shared helicopter flights to Lukla from Kathmandu and the same cost for return as well.
Please, contact us if you need any further information regarding your flights to Lukla of your Everest base camp Trek.