Flight bookings to and from India may decline as a result of the country's top airports adopting new COVID-19-related requirements for all passengers.
Due to an increase in Omicron instances, Delhi and Mumbai, India's two largest flight hubs, have issued updated passenger arrival procedures. According to a source cited by Gulf News, the new bookings have stalled, and families appear hesitant to travel under the new Covid restrictions because it is too much of a burden.
Ticket prices for flights from the UAE to India have fallen, with tickets for Delhi and Mumbai starting at Dh400-Dh500, down from Dh1,000-Dh2,000 just a few weeks ago.
COVID-19 Travel Rules for Arrival at Mumbai
After arrival in Mumbai, all travellers who are Mumbai residents must complete a seven-day home quarantine. On the seventh day, they must perform an RT PCR test, and if the results are negative, the traveller must self-monitor for another seven days. If the RT-PCR test result is positive, passengers will be transferred to an institutional quarantine facility in accordance with current international travel norms. Connecting flights will be available for those connecting to other states.
COVID-19 Travel Rules for Arrival at New Delhi
The Indian embassy requires passengers to book their flight at least 24 hours in advance and include all mandatory information. Take a PCR test at any recognised medical facility at least 72 hours before your flight. Children under five are exempt from testing unless they demonstrate COVID-19 symptoms. All travellers who are obliged to take an on-arrival test must pre-book their COVID-19 PCR test while completing the Air Suvidha part of their self-declaration form (SDF).
The new measures will have a negative effect on the flow of tourists between the two countries and any business trips. Business executives who want to visit the country for 1-2 days cannot adhere to the quarantine rules.
With these new restrictions, the odds of regular commercial flights returning seem considerably slimmer. Ending the 'bubble' agreement would have allowed UAE airlines to operate at 100% of pre-Covid capacity, dramatically lowering rates on the route.
The cases of Omicron are surging in India. Delhi and Maharastra are the top in terms of count.