On May 25, 2020, India witnessed the unlocking of the grounding on domestic aviation after precisely two months or so. With all the confusion about the restart of aviation till last night, and many states changing their guidelines till the last minute, passengers and airlines were visibly confused with what was going. Mumbai Airport changed its allowed number of flights late last night. This morning, around 82 flight movements into and out of Delhi Airport were cancelled.
The good news is, however, that airlines took off today. As per the Ministry of Civil Aviation today, 428 domestic flight departures took place on May 25, 2020, and flew 30,550 passengers departed today. That is an average of 71 passengers on a plane.
Here are some details on the departures and arrivals on May 25, 2020.
Here is the first departure of the day, 6E643, from Delhi to Patna at about 4:45 AM on IndiGo.
Air Vistara had all their cabin crew fully dressed up in PPE for the duration of the flight.
So did SpiceJet.
Passengers are supposed to fly with masks and a visor for the duration of the flight, to be provided by the airline at the gate. However, this Air India passenger took it to a whole different level today.
But the chaos that is deboarding did not stop in India. This is on An AirAsia India flight, I5884 between Mumbai and Delhi today, where an orderly deboarding was conveniently forgotten as the plane touched down. This was a full flight by the way from the looks of it.
There were some very stark numbers to show for the resumption of flights. For instance, Hyderabad to Kolhapur saw 19 passengers arrive on the plane and 22 passengers depart on the return flight today.
Domestic flight from @RGIAHyd to @APDKolhapur was successfully handled with the help of stakeholders including state health dept, police & revenue officials involved in smooth ops. With 19 pax arriving & 22 departing from airport, all #COVID__19 related guidelines were followed. pic.twitter.com/pZFlClFhHJ
— Airports Authority of India (@AAI_Official) May 25, 2020
Madurai Airport said that on two flights from Chennai today, 19 and 46 passengers arrived respectively.
#MaduraiAirportresumesoperation Indigo flight from Chennai arrived at 0830 Hrs IST today-Total Pax 19. Spicejet Flight from Chennai arrived at 1100 Hrs IST-Total Pax 46. Officials from Health department followed the necessary protocol and the E-Pass of pax were also verified. pic.twitter.com/wqnv4mawKE
— APD MADURAI (@aaimduairport) May 25, 2020
On May 24, it was decided that Kolkata and Bagdogra airports won’t function till May 27, but will deal with only 20 flights every day from May 28. Vijayawada and Vizag airports in Andhra Pradesh will deal with simply operate 20% of their pre-lockdown flights from May 26.
Mumbai Airport, India’s second busiest airport, will deal with solely 50 flights every day for now and Chennai Airport will see 25 arrivals per day, with no limit on the number of departures. Hyderabad Airport in Telangana will deal with 30 flights every day from Monday onwards.
It will be a long road to recovery for Indian aviation which was fuelled by cheap flights and many passengers taking flight for the first time. As the country stays in a lockdown and flight prices are regulated, it will be a very different era for the times ahead.
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