Restricted International flights to US, France May Resume From Today Through ‘Air Bubbles’
Under this arrangement airlines from the concerned countries will be able to operate flights from & to India along with Indian carriers. I have no doubt these will be beneficial for our citizens who are stressed & distressed abroad or those who want to fly out.— Hardeep Singh Puri (@HardeepSPuri) July 16, 2020
"Till international civil aviation can reclaim its pre-COVID numbers, I think answer will lie through bilateral air bubbles, which will carry a possible number of people but under defined conditions as countries are still imposing entry restrictions including India”, Puri told media persons.
"We are at a very advanced stage between with three countries and it is a work-in-progress. For example, Air France will be operating 28 flights between Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Paris from 18 July to 1 August while United Airlines of the US will be flying 18 flights between July 17-31, but this is an interim one. We have request from German carriers to permit flights to India and we are processing it," Puri said. Under these air bubble agreements, Air India will also be operating flights to the US and France. Thursday's announcement by the Civil Aviation Minister comes a little over three weeks after the US moved for restrictions on Air India, accusing it of 'discriminatory and restrictive practices' while operating repatriation flights,