Helitours, the commercial air arm of the Sri Lanka Air Force, has resumed its scheduled flight to Jaffna and Trincomalee from 14 January 2019. The domestic flight operators suspended passenger flights in August 2018 after the aviation regulation recalled the certificate of airworthiness (CofA) issued to its Xian MA60 aircraft, pending technical compliance.
The scheduled flights will now operate three times a week on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) flying via Trincomalee to Palaly Airport. Helitours will be using the MA60 – a military flight cleared for civilian transport – which can accommodate up to 52 passengers at a time. Although, a different terminal at BIA will be used for the domestic flight, Helitours advice passengers to arrive at the airport 1.5hrs early to minimise any inconvenience. As there are on-going refurbishments at the Palaly Airport, there might be delays in take-off times on certain days from the airport.