India negotiating with 13 countries for travel bubble


India negotiating with 13 countries for travel bubble

With travel bubbles becoming the new travel trend in COVID times, India is now negotiating with 13 other countries to establish air bubble arrangements for international flight operations. The same was recently announced by Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri.

As per the bi-lateral air bubble arrangements, airlines between these countries and India will be able to operate international flights with certain restrictions.

Referring to this, Puri, in a series of tweets, stated that they are making efforts to negotiate air travel arrangements with 13 more countries. He added in his tweets that the said countries include Japan, Australia, Singapore, Nigeria, South Korea, Russia, Thailand, Italy, Kenya, Philippines, Israel, Bahrain, and New Zealand. These negotiations will further benefit nationals of these countries, as well as Indians stranded in those countries.

Since July, India has managed to establish such air bubbles with seven other countries, i.e., the United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States of America, France, Germany, Qatar, and the Maldives.

As of now, scheduled international passenger flights continue to remain suspended in India due to the Coronavirus outbreak. The Civil Aviation Minister informed that in the coming days, efforts will be made to create such bi-lateral arrangements with countries other than the ones that have been mentioned above.

Further, domestic flights in India started operating from May 25, after remaining grounded due to COVID-19 outbreak and the subsequent lockdown. Reportedly, the average occupancy rate in the domestic flights has been around just 50-60 per cent since May 25. As of now, Indian airlines are allowed to operate 45 per cent of their pre-COVID domestic flights.

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