Days after starting domestic flights in India, the International flights may be started in and out of the country through ‘Travel bubbles’ or ‘Bilateral bubble arrangement’. These ‘Bubble arrangement’ means the flights could start to select countries and that too with strict conditions. It is called travel bubble as it strictly caters to traffic between two nations under special arrangements.
Currently no International flying is taking out from India except the ones under Vande Bharat scheme.
A Times Of India reports says India from next month will look at creating travel bubbles with countries yay allow access to its citizens and vice versa.
The Centre expects domestics passenger movement to touch half the pre pandemic level by mid July after which it will consider allowing schedule international flights under a ‘bilateral bubble arrangement’ with such nations.
Reports also say these global flights may resume on case to case basis
Notably, India resumed domestic flight services from May 25, after a gap of two months amid the coronavirus pandemic.
“If international operations have to start, both ends have to be ready and there has to be traffic. There is a significant amount of traffic between India and North American continent. We may think of opening flights on a case-to-case basis,” Aviation secretary PS Kharola said.
Indian Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri also asserted that the exact time for resuming international flights depends on other countries to be open to receive flights. The Minister said a decision would be taken on the resumption of international flights based on several factors including lifting of airspace restrictions by various countries, quarantine norms and ease of travel within those countries for incoming passengers.
“For international air travel, the first condition is that you need the airspace to be open. That means you must allow people to fly in. You must have the border acceptance to be free. What happens as a result of covid-19 is that many countries decided not to allow nationals other than their own to come in,” Puri said.
The government will consider resumption of international flights once domestic traffic reaches 50%-55% capacity. At present, domestic airlines can operate upto 33% of its capacity.
There are plans to arrange over 1,000 more Vande Bharat flights to bring back Indians from around the world of which 70% will be operated by private airlines, Minister of State for Civil Aviation Hardeep Puri said on Saturday.
Under the first three phases of the Vande Bharat mission, Air India had operated 1,170 flights while various private carriers had flown 40 flights until June 18.
Air India will operate 300 flights and private carriers 750, Mr. Puri said at a press conference.
“The fares that the private airlines charge will not be market fares but will be predetermined comparable to what Air India and Air India Express are levying,” said Pradeep Kharola, Secretary, Civil Aviation.
The government has offered private carriers as many as 750 flights to operate under the Vande Bharat Mission (VBM) to repatriate stranded Indians from foreign countries, civil aviation minister Hardeep Singh Puri said on Saturday.
“About 40 of the 750 flights offered to private airlines under Vande Bharat Mission has already been scheduled. Air India Group will operate 300 additional flights under the Vande Bharat Mission, However, I am not sure if all 1000 (additional) flights will be availed (by the airlines),” Puri said at a press conference.
During the first two phases of VBM, national carrier Air India Ltd., and its subsidiary Air India Express, were the only airlines that were allowed to repatriate stranded Indians from foreign countries.
Air India and its subsidiary Air India Express brought back 109,203 passengers to India under VBM, till 18 June.