Domestic planes allowed up to 70% of occupancy
New Delhi : Domestic airlines have been allowed to operate at 70 per cent of their pre-COVID capacity instead of 60 per cent as approved previously, Union Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri announced on Wednesday.
“Domestic operations recommenced with 30K passengers on 25 May & have reached 2.06 lakhs on 8 November,” Puri said via a tweet.
On September 2, during unlock time; the Civil Aviation Ministry had said that the Indian airlines can operate a maximum 60 per cent of their pre-COVID occupany.
It had asserted on October 29 that the 60 per cent cap would be in place till “February 24, 2021, or until further orders”.
Domestic flight services were resumed on May 25, two months after India had announced complete lockdown to prevent spread of coronavirus. However, the passenger capacity for airlines was capped at 33 per cent of their pre-pandemic domestic flights. On June 26, this was increased to 45 per cent and then to 60 per cent on September 2.
However, the government has still maintained the price cap on domestic flights until further orders.
Meanwhile, scheduled international flights still continue to be banned in the nation although the government has been operating special international flight services under the Vande Bharat Mission since May through bilateral air bubble pacts signed with various countries.