After two years, India has terminated the Air Bubble Agreement for international flights.
As soon as the covid is brought under control, India will revoke its air bubble agreements with various countries for international flights and start regular flights from March 27.
The Civil Aviation Authority of India has said that despite the revocation of the agreement, international airlines operating in India will continue to adhere to strict security measures.
DGCA had extended the agreement for some time on February 28. Due to the covid, the Indian government has been operating double flights with different countries since 2021 as per the Air Bubble Agreement.
With the return of regular international flights to normal, it is now possible for private airlines and the flag carriers of both countries to expand the number of flights and destinations as per the demand.
Nepal Airlines Corporation, which has been flying Kathmandu-Delhi for the last two years, has stated that it will start flying to Bangalore and Mumbai. Similarly, private airline Buddha Air has stated that it has started the documentation work for the resumption of the Kathmandu-Vanaras flight from next April. According to the company, the flight schedule has been made for three days a week, including Sunday, Wednesday, and Friday.
Earlier, Nepal Airlines and Air India, Air Indigo, Vistara, and other airlines were allowed 56 flights per week from Nepal.
Although India had planned to allow regular flights to international airlines from last December, the latest variant of the Covid made postponed.
Air bubble agreements were signed with various countries, including Afghanistan, Australia, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Canada, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Germany, Iraq, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Maldives, Mauritius, Nepal, Netherlands, Nigeria, Oman, Qatar, Russia, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, Seychelles, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Tanzania, Ukraine, USA, UAE, UK, Uzbekistan, and those airlines were allowed to fly to Indian destinations.
Earlier, India had banned regular international flights from 2020. India today announced the end of the Air Bubble Agreement for limited flights to ease that. The Aviation Authority of India has issued a circular stating that international airlines operating commercial flights from India and India from March 27 will now operate passenger flights as before.
Is the fare still cheaper?
With the repeal of this agreement, the competition between the airlines of both countries will return to normal. This has opened up the possibility of additional benefits to the passengers in airfares.
The cutthroat competition on Nepal-India airfare has already started.
Due to the limited number of flights, fierce competition has started in the Nepal-India flight in the last two years. The Kathmandu-Delhi-Kathmandu two-way fare, which once averaged Rs 100,000, has now dropped to Rs 16,000. Due to the limited number of flights on this route, the one-way airfare was up to Rs 52,000, which has now dropped to around Rs 8,000.