India Extends Ban On International Flights Till August 31, More Travel Bubbles Shall Be Announced Soon

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) extended the fare cap on domestic flights till November 24, 2020. Earlier, the fare cap was placed till August 24. Now, the authorities have extended it for three more months. Amid the coronavirus outbreak, the Ministry of Aviation had implemented the fare restrictions for domestic flights. In a notification, DGCA has confirmed that flight capacity restrictions to 45 per cent and fare limits will be in effect till November 24. Now, the DGCA announced that international commercial passenger flights shall remain suspended till August 31. But this restriction won’t apply to international all-cargo flights and those specifically approved by the DGCA. It also announced that more travel bubbles will be formed with more countries. India recently announced air bubbles with the UAE and Kuwait to airlift repatriate stranded Indians from those countries. Air India currently operates flights to Singapore, UK, Netherlands and Germany. 

DGCA Suspends International Flights To & From India Till August 31

The aviation regulator extended the ban on international flights until August 31. DGCA announced in a statement  “The Government has decided to extend the suspension on the Scheduled International Commercial Passenger Services to/from India up to 2359 hours IST of 31st August.” It also clarified “However, this restriction shall not apply to international all-cargo operations and flights specifically approved by DGCA.” The Govt also warned people not to pay higher fares for Vande Bharat flights when booking with travel agents. 

The official statement said that ‘Transport Bubble’ was signed with the USA, France and Germany. the Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA)  announced setting up ‘air bubbles’ and partially resumed international flights to these destinations. Civil Aviation Minister of India, Hardeep Singh Puri also announced that India shall establish bubble with the UK soon. Under this, two flights shall operate per day between Delhi and London. They also received a request from Germany which they are processing.

DGCA Extends Fare Restrictions On Domestic Flights Till November 24

The fare curbs were issued on May 21, four days before the resumption of domestic flights in India. As per the restrictions, domestic flights with less than 40-minute duration will have lower and upper limits of ₹2,000 and ₹6,000. For 40-60 minutes, the limits are ₹2,500 and ₹7,500. For 60-90 minutes, the price range will be ₹3,000 and ₹9,000. The rates will be ₹3,500 and ₹10,000 for 90-120 minutes. For 120-150 minutes, one has to pay ₹4,500 and ₹13,000. Finally, for 150-180 minutes, the limits are ₹ 5,500 and ₹15,700.

Fare Restrictions On Domestic Flights

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Domestic flights had resumed operations in India on May 25, after being suspended for a period of two months in the wake of the coronavirus. Also, the authorities had initially allowed airlines to operate with 33 per cent capacity. Later, the capacity was increased to 45 per cent.

Also Read: I Took A Flight From Mumbai To Delhi During Pandemic And Here’s My Experience

People Are Scared To Travel By Air Now

As per reports, airlines feel that the poor demand for air travel is due to the passengers’ fears of catching the infection onboard and the complex quarantine rules.  Over 2.7 million passengers commuted via domestic flights since May 25 and more than 800 among them have tested coronavirus positive.

Fare Restrictions On Domestic Flights

Picture Credits: Policenama

If you’re booking a flight now, keep these fare brackets and capacity restrictions in mind. Also, be clear about the quarantine rules of the city or airport you are visiting and most importantly, adhere to the guidelines of social distancing. On that note, here’s what Vistara CCO has said about air travel with the coronavirus pandemic in place:

Suchismita Pal
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