International flight India ban extended until January 31, 2022

In March 2020, it became apparent that international flights in India will not operate anytime soon. Since then, Air India has been operating repatriation flights, and the Government of India has stitched up Air Bubbles with various countries. Non-stop flights are only permitted to these countries at the moment that has signed up Air Bubbles with India, and we have about 32 of these air bubbles.

India had planned to resume scheduled operations on December 15, 2021, but declared that they will “review” their decision in light of the Omicron variant of the SARS-CoV2 virus surfacing, and basically postponing the reopening of international commercial aviation. The review is complete, and the government of India has come to a decision.

International Flight India Ban

The DGCA has now put up a notification further extending the ban till January 2022. The Air Bubble flights and Vande Bharat flights are excluded from this notification.

This is terrible news for airlines, who will now have to go ahead and cancel flights they would have lined up to operate to India effective December 15, 2021. This is also terrible news for customers, who might have looked forward to coming back to India after a year or eighteen months, with fares having already skyrocketed due to the paucity of flights for a while.

Air Bubble Flights will continue, as reiterated by DGCA


India has once again extended its air travel ban. This means regular commercial air travel is off limits till January 30, 2022. I hope this time around this is the final timeline to reopening of operations and not just another extension.

What do you make of this International Flight India ban? 

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About Ajay

Ajay Awtaney is the Founder and Editor of Live From A Lounge (LFAL), a pioneering digital platform renowned for publishing news and views about aviation, hotels, passenger experience, loyalty programs, travel trends and frequent travel tips for the Global Indian. He is considered the Indian authority on business travel, luxury travel, frequent flyer miles, loyalty credit cards and travel for Indians around the globe. Ajay is a frequent contributor and commentator on the media as well, including ET Now, BBC, CNBC TV18, NDTV, Conde Nast Traveller and many other outlets.

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  1. Namaste
    I am french. I live in Tamil Nadu for 3 years.
    I got an OCI visa.
    At this moment i meet my french family.
    I have a ticket flight to come back in india the 18th january 2022.

    Thanks for your answer !

  2. I have my flight from Canada to India (Bangalore) via Qatar. Qatar to India is operated by Qatar airways. My flight is on Dec 26th. I am travelling to see mom after 3 years.

    I am really afraid if I will be able to travel?????

    Thanks for the response in advance.

  3. Sir, I am seafarer flying to srilanka from new delhi on 13th December to join ship!!! Can i travel? Will be grateful to you for your response on this!

  4. Hi, my boyfriend is coming from USA to India on confirmed tourist visa which he applied and confirmed flight ticket. He will fly on 13th from USA and reach Delhi on 15th December 5am. Will it effect his travel plans or will he able to land Delhi on 15th December?
    Will appreciate your feedback. Thank you.

  5. I have ticket scheduled on 1st January 2022, from delhi to Sydney(Australia). I have a student visa. I have booked Air India direct flight. Am i be eligible to travel?

  6. Will The flights continues after 31 Jan 2022 ? I am travelling from Delhi airport to Chicago by Air India airlines on 5th of Feb 2022 so can I still travel ?

  7. Hi Ajay,
    We are Indian born, British Passport holders and scheduled to fly from London to Gujarat on 18th and be back in mid January.
    Are our flying still allowed?
    This is frustrating situation.
    Please let us know by email.

  8. Please all international student and traveller’s support us please remove this banner because we waiting for 2 years plz remove this bann.

    • Exactly…. Even after getting screening certificate & visa we have to wait for this Corona shit.. what’s the problem if all the students maintain the COVID protocol & stays in proper quarantine after landing & completing RT PCR!!.. don’t know.. government is loving to play with the future of students.. cz all other’s are allowed for businesses then why workers & students have to stay aside waiting all the ages!!,?.. this is so disappointing!

  9. Hi,
    I have my flight scheduled direct flight on 14th Jan 2022, New Delhi to Vancouver. Will there any challenges??

  10. I’m travelling Mumbai to Paris direct flight by Air France on 20 December on short term Visa can I still go ? plz reply

  11. Hi ,
    Will the flights comes under Air bubble will be operational after 31st Jan 2022.
    In the tweet from DGCA it is mentioned that “existing Bubble Agreements shall continue to operate till 31st of January 2022.”

    • This is what is mentioned on the civil aviation ministry site:
      ii. Any Indian national or national of Nepal or Bhutan destined for Qatar or any country in South America or Africa only and holding a valid visa of the destination country. It would be for the airlines concerned to ensure that there is no travel restriction for Indian/Nepalese/Bhutanese nationals to enter the destination country before issue of ticket/boarding pass to the Indian/Nepalese/Bhutanese passenger; and

      From the looks of this it seems like you can only go to the Gulf or Africa/Sth. America which sounds crazy to me. You should talk to Qatar Airways if possible about this – never trust the Indian Government blindly on its word.

  12. What about the student pilot program running by Australian NSW Government. It is our dream and our career depends on this travel. I request our government not to cancel this pilot program flight which is on December 23rd.

  13. Can I travel from Dubai to Bangalore through emirates airlines as my vacation will be on next year Jan end like that

  14. I booked my flight ticket at KLM airlines from india to canada on December 23/2021 with
    Total 2 layovers ,1 in Dubai another one at Amsterdam. Can someone suggest me is this route is open for travel or banned?

  15. For clarification…since the USA has air bubble direct flights…can I still go in December on a tourist visa if I am on one of those flights? Appreciate your thoughts!

  16. Hi
    It’s so late January
    I know it’s scary n we ve to be careful but it’s not that much like before
    We are stuck here n my husband in England
    At lest let them allo till Kathmandu Nepal if not india
    We are not happy at all
    Please do not extend till February

    • Please tweet this message to DGCA India, Ministry of Civil Aviation and other Govt of India channels on social media like twitter. The govt believes that there is no demand for international air traffic other than air bubbles, so it is only our duty to convince that is not the case.

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