Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) recently suggested a “genius” plan to its customers so that they don’t accidentally miss a flight. The announcement asked the travelers to reach the airport 5 hours prior to the boarding time. The reason given by the airline was that the traffic gets congested due to security checks at the Islamabad International Airport so it is advised to get to the airport early.
The rather blunt suggestion was subject to criticism from a major part of social media. Considering the distress that the announcement caused, PIA has taken back its suggestion and has asked its customers to follow the previous timings.
A PIA official added that the letter got out “mistakenly”. By mistakenly the official means that someone wasn’t really intending to go through the whole process of uploading it to the official PIA Twitter account and they somehow accidentally wrote the notification without ever intending to do so. Hard to believe but since the official has told that there is no need to reach the airport 5 hours before the departure time, everything seems cool.
Here is what the announcement said;
Valued PIA customers, in light of the traffic congestion due to strict security checks at entry points of the new Islamabad International Airport, you are kindly requested to report at least 5 hours prior to departure time for your international flights. Your convenience is our foremost priority.
The image of under the “Special Announcement” title was uploaded to PIA Twitter account. However, it has been taken down after the recent announcement that it was done by mistake.
Criticism aside, PIA was indeed making the suggestion for its customers (They could have worded it better though since words like “convenience” received criticism). The new Islamabad airport is quite far away and Kashmir Highway does indeed get quite congested during busy hours. The security checkposts can easily add an hour or so to the travel time as flight numbers rise. Considering the current state of operations at the understaffed and ‘almost’ operational airport, it won’t really be a bad idea to leave an hour or two earlier than usual for flights from the IIAP.