Scheduled foreign flights resume today: India to connect with 63 countries

Six Indian airlines and 60 foreign airlines will start connecting India with 63 countries Sunday onwards as the aviation regulator DGCA has published the final schedule for international flights. The scheduled international flights will resume after a two-year suspension, imposed in March 2020 on account of the Covid pandemic.

According to the new summer schedule, foreign airlines will operate 1,783 weekly flights, while Indian carriers will operate 1,466 departures every week.  Market leader IndiGo will operate 505 departures per week, followed by Tata Group-owned Air India at 361 weekly flights, and its subsidiary Air India Express at 340 flights per week.

The resumption of scheduled international operations is expected to happen in a staggered manner. As per the last schedule prepared before the pandemic hit, a total of 4,700 international flight departures were being operated every week from Indian airports — with the split between international and domestic being approximately 50:50. Till Saturday, international flights in India were operating through air bubble arrangements with 37 countries.

The countries that get added as a result of scheduled operations include Iran, Malaysia, South Korea, Poland, Myanmar, Turkey, Yemen and Egypt. Even as scheduled operations replace air bubble flights, the guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare will continue to be applicable for international arrivals into India.

Dubai-based Emirates — which has the biggest operations in India for a foreign airline — will operate 170 flights a week. Sharjah-headquartered Air Arabia will operate 140 flights, including 30 Air Arabia Abu Dhabi’s flights from the UAE capital.

Sri Lanka Airlines will operate 128 weekly departures, while Oman Air will operate 115 flights every week from various destinations in India to Muscat.

Among European carriers, British Airways will operate 49 departures per week, while German carrier Lufthansa will operate 32 flights a week. Air France will fly 20 flights every week, and its group airline KLM will fly to Amsterdam from India 18 times a week.

Connecting India to Southeast Asia, Singapore Airlines will fly 65 times a week from Indian airports, its low-cost arm Scoot will operate 38 departures. Malaysian carrier AirAsia Berhad will operate 71 flights, while Malaysia Airlines will operate 30 departures a week. Thailand, one of the top tourist destinations from India, will also see connectivity through Thai Airways and Thai Smile, with weekly departures of 36 and 21, respectively.

A significant connectivity is also being provided between India and African countries with airlines such as Air Tanzania, Egypt Air, Ethiopian Airlines, Rwand Air and Kenya Airways operating weekly flights.

Among the US-based carriers, United Airlines and American Airlines will operate 28 flights and seven flights every week, respectively.

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