THE Central on Thursday issued an order for recommencement of domestic air travel of passengers with effect from May 25, 2020. It also issued detailed instructions and guidelines to be followed by passengers; and Specific Operating Guidelines for major stakeholders (Airlines, Airport Operators, Gmund Handling Agencies, etc.) for the strict compliance.
Following are the general instructions issued by the Ministry of Civil Aviation
- Passengers would require reporting to airport 2 hours before scheduled departure.
- Wearing of facemask must be essential.
- Vulnerable persons, such as very elderly, pregnant ladies, passengers with health issues are advised to avoid air travel.
- No physical check-in at air or counters would be done. Only those passengers with confirmed web check-in shall be allowed to enter the airport.
- Airlines should adhere to the lower and upper limits of fares prescribed by the Ministry during the period of COVID-19 pandemic
- A self-declaration/Aarogya Setu App status (for compatible device) would also be obtained that the passenger is free of COVID-19 symptoms. Passengers with “Red” status in ‘Aaroga Setu’ App would not be permitted to travel.
- The airlines would not provide meal services on board.
- The cabin crew is required to be in full protective suit.
- Only one check-in bag will be allowed.
- No newspaper or magazine shall be provided on board by the airlines.
- Use of baggage trolleys has to be minimized.
Instructions to be followed at Airport
- Passengers must have mask on
- Passenger should go through thermal screening
- Passenger should get himself/herself checked for temperature. A designated staff of the Airport will do this. The status of “Aarogya Setu” should be displayed to the staff.
- In case of non-availability of “Aarogya Setu” the passenger should be facilitated to go a counter provided by the airport where Aarogya Setu can be downloaded. Children below fourteen years of age would be exempt from this requirement.
- Passengers are mandated to adhere to the single baggage policy in the initial phase
- Passengers to adhere to the social distancing, which would be specified at the airports through markings, like circle, square or tensor barrier as specified at the airport to be used by the passenger.
- Passengers to complete the check-in procedure and baggage drop of at least 60 minutes before departure.
Additionally, passengers would be required to collect safety kit (three-layered surgical masks, face shield and sanitizer) from the airlines near the boarding gate. They need to wear a mask, face shield and sanitize their hands before proceeding to the boarding gate for scanning of the boarding pass.
Airlines would need to devise a system that web-check-in or tele check-in is possible only when the passenger certified the status of their health through the Aarogya Setu App or a self-declaration form. The passenger shall give a declaration to the following effect:
- I/we am/are not residing in any containment zone.
- I/we am/are not suffering any fever/cough/any respiratory diseases
- I/we am are not under quarantine.
- If I/we develop any of the above-mentioned symptoms I shall contact the concerned health authorities immediately
- I/we have not tested COVID-|9 positive in last two months
- I/we am eligible to travel as per the extant norms
- I shall make my mobile numher / contact details available to the airlines \whenever required by them
- I understand that if I undertake the air journey without meeting the eligibility criteria, I would be liable to penal action.
Air travel of passengers, both domestic and international, has been prohibited since March 25, 2020. Now the Government of India decided to allow domestic air travel of passengers from Monday.
Read the full SOP here.