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According to the order of the ministry, the flights have been operating 85 percent of their pre-COVID domestic services since September 18.
Capacity restrictions to be removed
Airlines will be able to fly domestic flights without any capacity restrictions starting on October 18, according to a statement released on Tuesday by the Ministry of Civil Aviation, which took into consideration “customer demand for air travel.”
Capacity restrictions in different months
Between August 12 and September 18, the capacity cap was 72.5 percent, 65 percent between July 5 and August 12, and 50 percent between June 1 and July 5. The capacity cap was 72.5 percent between August 12 and September 18, and 65 percent between July 5 and August 12.
On October 9, the Indian airlines operated 2,340 domestic flights, accounting for 71.5 percent of their total capacity prior to the COVID agreement.
Reason for removing capacity restrictions
Specifically, according to the ministry’s order, “it has been determined to restart scheduled domestic air service with effect from October 18, 2021, without any capacity restrictions.” According to the directive, the decision was reached “after a study of the existing state of scheduled domestic operations in relation to passenger demand for air travel.”
When the government resumed scheduled domestic flights on May 25 last year after a two-month hiatus, the ministry had permitted the airlines to run no more than 33% of their pre-Covid domestic services, according to the Ministry of Transportation.
The cap was gradually raised to 80 percent by December 2020, with the final percentage set at 80 percent.
The 80-percent restriction was in effect until the first day of June this year.
Following a significant increase in the number of active COVID-19 cases across the country on May 28, the decision to lower the cap from 80 to 50 percent from June 1 onwards was made “in light of the drop in passenger traffic and the passenger load (occupancy rate) component,” according to the ministry.
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