According to reports, the Indian government might open the economy a little bit in the next few days. With that, commercial flight operations are likely to start soon as well. Some commercial flights can operate from May 18 or before that. The Minister of Civil Aviation is currently in talks with the airlines and travel agents discussing how operations will take place once the services resume. Indian airlines have been grounded since March and now they are running dry. There are many fixed costs for the airlines, but the revenues are down, which has made it hard for the airlines to survive. In their bid to see another day and have enough cash reserves, airlines have slashed the salaries of their employees.
Post-Lockdown Changes That you Will See
Once the lockdown is lifted, you are going to witness many changes when you are travelling by air. One of the biggest concerns both for the airlines and the passengers is the rule for leaving the middle seats empty to maintain social distance. International Air Transport Association (IATA) has argued that leaving the middle seats empty won’t do anything. The minimum distance required to maintain social distancing is 1 meter, and leaving the middle seats empty would only create a length of 60 centimetres between the two passengers. So if the middle seats are left vacant, you can expect the flight charges for you to soar and nothing significant to happen in terms of keeping you safe.
Airports Made More Secure
Airports are going to be cleaned extensively once the routine operations of the airlines start. With that, there will be mandatory social distancing norms in place. Most of the food and beverage outlets will be closed and whatever food that is provided to you will be given in a takeaway box. But at the same time, IGI Airport, Delhi has opened its Terminal 3 for flights to operate but has kept every food and beverage outlet there is open. This is to ensure that people don’t flock into a single store if there are fewer stores open, and this makes sense.