Vaishno Devi Helicopter Yatra

Helicopter for Vaishno Devi yatra is available from Katra (the starting point of yatra) to Sanjhichatt. 5-6 passengers can be accommodated at a time while the flight takes approximate 8 minutes. The Katra helipad is at Udhampur Road, 2km from Bus Stand Katra.

From the Sanjhichatt helipad, it takes a 30-minute hike to reach the Vaishno Devi Bhawan, which is around 2.5kms. Ponies, Palkis and Porter services are also available to reach the Bhawan from Sanjhichatt. The helicopter facility is made available through the official website of the Vaishno Devi Shrine Board as well as private companies.
Vaishno Devi is now open for the pilgrims!

Vaishno Devi Helicopter Ticket

One way fare from Katra to Sanjhichhat or vice versa is priced at INR 1730 per person. Two-way ticket for Katra to Sanjhichhat is INR 3460 per person. Children below 2 years of age are carried free of cost and must travel in the lap of an adult.
  • There is no commission/processing fee other than this. Applicable taxes, if any, are charged from the traveller at the respective location in Katra or Sanjichhat.
  • You can book the helicopter for Vaishno Devi yatra through the official website. 
  • The helicopter tickets can also be booked through private websites and tour operators.
  • Valid ID Proof might be required in the age-related dispute.

Vaishno Devi Yatra Helicopter Timings

Helicopter services start at 08:30 AM, and it takes 08 minutes to reach Sanjichhat from Katra. The service remains active till approximately 07:00 PM with helicopters taking off about every 20 minutes or so from Katra as well as Sanjichhat.

Darshan Timings: 5:00 AM - 12:00 PM; 4:00 PM - 9:00 PM

Online Booking of Vaishno Devi Helicopter

The only official website for booking is www.maavaishnodevi.org. Advance booking can be made online on the official website, and for offline bookings, tickets can be purchased at the Current Heli-Ticket Counter. You can make a booking for official helicopter services online by creating an account at New Devotee Registration. Advance booking facilities start at 10:00 AM, 60 days before the day of the journey.

Vaishno Devi Bhawan
Source

Ticket Booking For Vaishno Devi Helicopter Service

  • The offline booking process starts at 08:00 AM in the morning at the Current Heli-Ticket Counter, but the queue starts lining up at 05:00 AM in the morning, so you need to reach there very early.
  • It is advisable to book helicopter tickets online in advance to avoid last-minute disappointment and hassles if the tickets are sold out.

Vaishno Devi Helicopter Tickets - Online Booking Process

To ensure you have a smooth journey even before it starts, Vaishno Devi helicopter tickets called “Yatra Parchi” are now available for online booking. This includes services running between Katra and Sanjichhat. As soon as you make the payment on the secure portal and confirm your ticket, carry a printed version of the ticket and valid proof of identity like passport, PAN card, voter ID card or driving license. 

Online Yatra Parchi is processed free of cost. 15,000 helicopter tickets for Vaishno Devi are available every day. Online booking services open 60 days in advance at 10AM daily. Booking will close 4 days before your date of journey.

Hassle-free online booking has made it very convenient for aged people, physically challenged and parents with children to visit Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine without waiting in long queues for offline tickets. You can log on to the website below for purchasing Yatra Parchi.

Official website for tickets: matavaishnodevi.org 
Ticket prices:
Round trip from Katra - Sanjichhat - Katra: INR 3460
One way: INR 1730
Time Required for Online Booking: 1 hour
Here is a step by step guide to the process of online registration and booking for Vaishno Devi helicopter tickets: -

Step 1: Register on the Maa Vaishno Devi official website by providing all your details in the “New User Registration” section.

Step 2: Enter flight dates and choose timings to check availability. Each user can book up to 5 tickets at one time.

Step 3: Make the payment and download Yatra Parchi within 48 hours of booking.

Cancellation Policy of Vaishno Devi Helicopter Tickets

  • If circumstances compel you to cancel your trip after tickets are already booked, you can cancel your Vaishno Devi helicopter tickets between 4-7 days in advance.
  • 50% of the paid amount is refunded for each ticket after deducting processing and cancellation charges.
  • If your helicopter, unfortunately, encounters bad weather and delays, tickets are subject to cancellation. However, you will be refunded the full amount.

Basepoint for Helicopter to Mata Vaishno Devi

The base point for a helicopter ride is Katra. The helicopter will drop you at the Sanjichhat helipad from where Bhavan (the main temple) is located at a distance of around 2 km.

Vaishno Devi by Helicopter
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Rules and Regulations (For Official Bookings)

1. An ERS (Electronic Reservation Slip) is mandatory for availing facilities booked online. Make sure to fill the slip in the prescribed format, take a print out and carry it with you at all times during your visit to the shrine.

2. The pilgrims mandatorily have to have the 'Aarogya Setu' app on their mobile phones.

3. After the pandemic, only asymptomatic passengers will be allowed to take a yatra.

4. Use of 'Face Mask/ Face Shield' is mandatory.

5. Pilgrims from outside Jammu & Kashmir are to necessarily take a COVID Antigen test.

6. Pilgrims are to wash their hands and feet repeatedly before entering the sanctum sanctorum.

7. Touching of idols is not permitted.

8. No blanket or linen will be provided.

9. A maximum of 05 helicopter seats can be booked per user per Debit/Credit card in a calendar month. So, schedule accordingly.

10. Make sure to carry a photo ID card, address proof and the Debit/Credit card used to make the booking (in original). Passport/ Driving Licence/ Voters ID/ PAN card or Credit Card with Photo are acceptable as ID/address proof.  Also note that for offline bookings, ID proof is required for all travellers and not just for the person purchasing the tickets.

11. You also need to carry proof of travel document such as bus/train/air ticket.

12. After online booking, make sure to check the status of your transaction in the Devotee Zone. It is only valid when the transaction status is shown as Successful. If money is debited from your bank account, but the transaction status is Failed, the booking is not valid, and no helicopter seats will be allotted in this case. You need to make a fresh booking in this case. Any amount deducted in case of a failed booking will be refunded.

13. Make sure to report to the helipad at least one hour before the scheduled departure. Otherwise, your ticket may be treated as No-Show, and no refund will be provided.

Vaishno Devi Darshan by Helicopter
Source

Vaishno Devi Mandir

Vaishno Devi is a Shaktipeeth which means that it possesses the enormous spiritual energy to safeguard the divine form of the goddess. Maa Vaishno Devi was born as Vaishnavi (an incarnation of Lord Vishnu) in a South Indian family. At a very early age, she left home to meditate and find her spirituality.  This is where she chanced upon Lord Ram who told her that the time for her to become one with her creator has not yet come and she must meditate till Kaliyug when Lord Ram will incarnate as Kalki and merge with her to become one.

It was during her meditation when Bhairon Nath attempted to distract her and get her to marry him. After repeated pestering, the goddess was forced to kill him and beheaded him. The place where his head fell is known as Bhairav Ghati. Before dying, he was finally forgiven by the Goddess who gave him the blessing that devotees will have to go for Bhairon's darshan after the darshan of the Goddess.

After this, the Goddess assumed the form of a rock to meditate, and this 5.5 feet tall rock with three heads is the main shrine that is visited by pilgrims all year round. Navratris are considered the most auspicious time to visit as the Goddess observed the Navratra to pray for Lord Ram's victory against Ravan and was blessed by him to be revered by everyone.

Vaishno Devi Trek

The hiking trail, though long, is fairly easy. The trekking path is well constructed and shaded for most of the way. The first six kilometres are said to be the steepest, and the trail is busy with walkers and ponies. The way clears up on the last 5 kilometres to the Bhawan as there are separate walkways for ponies and walkers.

Eatables and drinks are available throughout the way so you can stay hydrated and energized during the hike and do not have to worry about carrying a load of eating supplies. Restrooms are also conveniently located along the way. Do keep in mind that the hike is easy, but the climb is steep. So, it does get tiring and swollen legs, and body cramps are normal after the climb. It does get cleared up within a day or two, and the fresh air is energising enough to let you revel in Mata's darshan without any feeling of tiredness.

Basic physical fitness is needed for the trek, and it is advisable to engage in physical exercise a few days before the journey. For those who cannot or do not want to take the uphill climb, the aforementioned helicopter facilities are also available.

This post was published by Pragya Chaturvedi

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