Vistara to resume hot beverage services in Economy and Premium Economy by March 1, 2022

Much ink has been spent on this website about Vistara’s stance on meal services. Last year (2021), after the second wave, Vistara decided to stop meal service on most flights and replaced it with snack boxes that were handed out to everyone. Vistara was inferring the DGCA circular on low-contact and serving only packaged products to its advantage, as these meal boxes cost them next to nothing in terms of cash outgo but allowed them to claim they are a full-service carrier.

Unfortunately, there were many customer complaints for months (including yours truly), and things came to a head in October 2021, when the airline decided to re-introduce meals. Vistara publicly announced that they were only going to re-introduce hot vegetarian meals in economy class, and these meals indeed have been back on the Vistara flights I’ve flown since. Note that the hot meals are only back on flights above 2 hours block time. Other sectors still received those soddy sandwiches, though. In January 2022, Vistara brought back the non-vegetarian main meals as well, although they have not publicly spoken about this.

Hot Beverages, as per Vistara, were discontinued because of low-contact requirements of the DGCA, however, the other reason was that there are only 4 flight crew that are flying on the plane now, compared to the earlier 5. So, one crew serves Business Class, one is shared between Premium Economy and Economy and two take care of Economy Class only. However, given the wave is easing out, and Air India is providing a full-service meal option on Air India, Vistara has decided to resurrect full-service levels by March 1, 2022.

Some flights have already seen the return of hot beverages. Air India has been doing this since January 2022.

The service will be progressively rolled out across all sectors by March 1, 2022.

What now remains to be seen is if Vistara also brings back other amenities such as newspapers, blankets, water pour over water bottles back on board.


Vistara is slowly bringing back the service levels to pre-pandemic levels. This includes non-vegetarian meals and tea/coffee service across all cabins. I guess, I’d say better late than never.

What do you make of Vistara’s reversal of their earlier stance, since DGCA has not changed their guidelines on meal service yet? 

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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. Good news. Yesterday (11-Feb-2022), DEL-PNQ sector had no hot beverage in either the economy or premium economy cabins.

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