Cochin (COK) airport is an international airport but the terminal is small and manageable. Kochi is well connected to major cities in India. Some of the airlines that fly into Kochi include: SpiceJet, Indigo, Go Air, Air India, Jet Airways, and JetKonnect. You can check makemytrip.com or cleartrip.com to compare flight schedules and fares, but I'd recommend booking directly on the specific airline's site so you won't pay a service charge and won't have any hassles if you need to change your flight.
The airport itself is very small. Once you arrive head for the pre-paid taxi counter. The ride to Fort Kochi can be long depending on traffic (at least an hour - can be closer to an hour and a half so allow plenty of time getting back to the airport for your flight out). Fare should be around Rs 1000 depending on the type of car you want.
In Fort Kochi you can rent a bicycle, scooter, or motorcycle to get around. In almost all Indian cities, I would never recommend doing so (even in Goa, it can be a little rough!), But in Fort Kochi I think it's a great way to get around. The atmosphere is so casual and relaxing and the traffic is light - and not so crazy as in other places!
Rates run about $15-25 per day for motorcycles depending on the type you rent and the season. Weekly rates are cheaper. Scooters and bicycles are also less.
You'll find signs advertising rentals as you walk around or you can ask at your hotel.
Fort Kochi is a fairly compact area and it's very easy to walk to most places of interest. For places further out, although there are red buses (Rs 4), I'd recommend taking a rickshaw. Be sure to negotiate a price before you get in or that the driver is using the meter. Meter rates are a minmum of Rs 12 for 3 km. You can hire a rickshaw to take you to several places and he will wait for you at each place. This is the best option.
There are regular boat services every 20-30 minutes, from Ernakulam to Fort Kochi. We found that the ferry to Fort Kochi main jetty cost 2.5 rupees (250paise), and coming back from the jetty near the synagogue to Ernakulam cost 3.5INR (350 paise). Very cheap, probably faster than the bus, and my partner even caught a glimpse of a dolphin (sadly I missed it!).
At Ernakulam main jetty there are two queues for the ferries, one for men and one for women.
Take a train.
The 2076 JAN SHATABDI Express leaves Trivandrum Central station TVC at 06.00 in the morning to reach Ernakulam Junction in Cochin ERS at 09.15 am. It covers the distance of 200 km in 03.15 hours. It has AC Chair Car; very comfortable - like an airline seating.
Just four hours and you land at Cochin.. a journey which took many of the malayalees of malaysia nearly one month to accomplish about sixty years ago!
convenient schedules, not needing to spend a night on the plane. efficiency of air asia and the price is right.
As you leave the Customs area, directly in front of you is the Pre Paid Taxi office. They have set fees to take you to Cochin, fares depending upon where you wish to go. I am told there is a bus running to downtown ernakulam but after a flight with some luggage, i opted for the taxi
510 indian rupees slightly over ten dollars for the air conditioned white ambassador car to Hotel Metropolitan near the Railway station in Ernakulam
Air Asia from KL arrived on time at 1600. Doors opened at 1605. I was first out of the plane and the first on the Immigration Line. 1610 had already been through immigration and Collected the bags. 1615 paid for the taxi and 1620 I was inside the taxi on my way to Metropolital Hotel in Ernakulam.
I have noticed that since they stopped checking people and their baggage going back about 10 years, the immigration and customs procedures are a breeze. Good on You Cochin
I daresay things will be different now but none of the vehicles we travelled in were air-conditioned, and some might even have been described as bone-shakers.Rural roads were often bumpy and driving habits sometimes on the scarey side - particularly in traffic. However in spite of constant hooting of the horn. It did not appear to be aggressive driving. None of our journeys by road were very long but it was good to have bottled water because it did get very hot.
Look out for the colourfully painted buses and lorries!
I arrived in Ernakulum on the train from Coimbatore after visiting Ooty and took an auto-rickshaw to the ferry jetty for Kochi. Ferries, here, depart every 40 minutes or so and operate from between 6am and 9.30pm and cost Rs3. It takes about 20 minutes to get to Kochi.
Greetings from Cochin.. i am here just for the day.. and Sunil from the Touristland Tours and Travels tells me that one and half hours for the ride from the port to the airport and then at least one hour before the flight. you might want to ask the taxi driver to show you some sights on the way..if you have any questions sunil will answer for you +919387777113
you can check my tips on the frustrations about transport in and around Cochin.
Ernakulum is actually the name of a place in Cochin city, its like Brooklyn in New York. So most of the time the train is sold or advertised as say Delhi-ernakulum or Bombay-ernakulum and you are like looking to go to Cochin but cant find transport that takes you there.
So guys here it is, the worst kept secret, Ernakulum is actually in Cochin city, so go ahead and book that ticket to Ernakulum and you will definitely land in Cochin, trust me!!
you can email sunil or suresh at firstname.lastname@example.org and ask them to arrange a taxi for the duration of your stay. The Cruise ships come right up to the town so the distance is not a problem, you should take the taxi to fort cochin and see the sights there.. look at various VT pages of Cochin for information.
They have helped me above and beyond duty on several occasions and have become friends..
PREPAID TAXI SERVICE AT COCHIN AIRPORT
The flight was supposed to arrive at 0245 AM but it came in at 0345 AM. The luggage delivery and getting out of the customs area was fast enough
Yet another line. ( Indians love standing in line: on this trip, I have stood in line: once at Bombay immigration, second at the customs, third trying to get into air india area, fourth at luggage taping, fifth at the air india counter, sixth at the immigration to go into the terminal, seventh at the customs area, eighth at the security area, ninth at the departure lounge, tenth at the customs and immigration in cochin, so this was the eleventh time between arrival in India at 10 45 pm and arrival in Cochin at 03 45, in five hours in India.
The lady behind was pleasant, I wanted to go to MG Road, she prints out ( for an IT country, the computer and the printers are from another era, the kind you expect to see in an impoverished country) a receipt. 466 INR, roughly 8 Euros, to travel the 40 km to Ernakulum. I go out in the rain to the marked car. The driver does not speak English, so I say clearly the name of the hotel, and in 45 minutes through the heavy monsoon rain, we are in front of the hotel.
The English word the driver did know was, after the car stopped, without offering me an umbrella which he had in his possession, he said a favourite English Word:
TIP TIP DRIVER TIP.
I would recommend highly the Pre Paid Taxi service. The price is right, the cars are the old fashioned but charming Ambassadors without air conditioning.
COCHIN INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
The new airport is at Angamaly, closer to the town of Alwaye than Cochin. It is in the middle of nowhere, done so to reduce the impact on the environment. The old, chaotic and somewhat romantic aerodrome left over from the British Colonial Days was in the Willingdon Island , which was totally inadequate when Cochin became a city of exporting humans to the Middle East. The new aiport can handle all the flights coming and going out. It is a testament to the Kerala Labourers to th Middle East that every single major arab airlines from the gulf region: etihad, emirates, Saudi, Kuwait, and Arabia all fly in and out of Cochin Airport
Air India has direct flights to Riyadh, Jeddah, Koweit and intriguingly enough to Salalah in Oman. Connecting through Calicut and Mangalore, Air India flies to
Muscat, Sharjah, dubai, Al Ain, Abu Dhabi, Doha, Bahrain, Dammam.
The traffic to the middle east is mainly Labour Traffic and not intended for tourism. Cochin is well connected by air to Bombay, Delhi and Bangalore and Madras, and through these ports to the wider world.
Silk Air flies daily to Singapore. Tiger Airways from Singapore used to fly here but they have stopped flying here. Sri Lankan flies to Colombo and beyond.
I really look forward to the day when Cochin will direct flights from Europe without stopping off in the Middle East.
My usual routing is:
Either Air France from Paris to Bombay and then down to Cochin
Continental from New York to Bombay and then down to Cochin
From KL and Singapore it is easier to reach Madras and it is a pleasure to fly Paramount airways down to Cochin.