Airline industry all the world is in a cash-strapped situation. There is nothing that seems to be going towards the way of the aviation sector. In India, Airlines have had to take measures such as cutting salaries of their employees to save some cash. There are huge fixed costs but no source of revenue at the moment. All international airline operations have been paused from March 21, and from March 25, every domestic service was stopped as well. The lockdown was supposed to be lifted on April 14, but instead, it got extended to May 3. This was not good news for Indian aviation. Now, the DGCA even asked the airlines not to take any bookings for the period after May 3.
Airlines Have Resumed Bookings Even After The Direct Order From DGCA
DGCA first asked the airlines to refund the full money to the customers who had booked their travel during the first lockdown phase for the dates between April 15 and May 3. But now, airlines such as GoAir and SpiceJet Ltd have started taking bookings for flights from May 16. Other major airlines such as IndiGo, Vistara, and AirAsia have started taking flight bookings from June 1. However, Air India hasn’t begun taking bookings.
Airlines Forced To Take Bookings
No one can blame the airlines here for accepting bookings. They have to pay for maintaining the grounded aircraft, their employees and other more costs. The airlines need some cash inflow, and this is the best way to do it. The problem will arise when the government extends the lockdown even further, and the booked flights will be cancelled. The government has already once asked the airlines to return the money to their customers who booked their flights during the lockdown. It is possible that it would do that again. But again, airlines are doing only what will help them survive. Indian aviation is going to face billions of dollars worth of loss in the coming times, and the airlines will require some kind of help from the government to stay afloat.