With the domestic flights carefully resuming operations during these unprecedented times, there is a lot of confusion surrounding these flight travels. Students, office workers, and other people, who were stuck in different parts of the countries ever since the announcement made by PM Narendra Modi to carry out the biggest lockdown the world has ever seen, are now able to book their flights back home and be with their family.
What to Expect:
The limited scale and highly controlled commencement of the aviation sector in India has brought about some much-needed relief since it’s reopening from Monday (25/5/2020). The government of India has issued a set of do’s and don’ts for the passengers undertaking the journey via flight from Mumbai to Delhi or generally anywhere except Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal.
First of all, the passengers will expect some steep rise in the ticket price since planes will be functioning and operating at minimal and effectively reduced capacity. However, the government has set up a set of strict guidelines for the aviation companies and set a bar for fixing the ticket fares.
Here is a step by step guide of what you will be experiencing:
- While entering the airport your ticket and identification will be checked by security personnel through the glass barrier.
- Your luggage will also be sanitized on entrance.
- You will then proceed on to get your ticket from the kiosk of your airline company (there will be several kiosks that will allow you to print your boarding pass).
- Along with the boarding pass you will also be given your baggage tag that you will have to tie in your bags yourself and then head on to the airline counter to check in your luggage.
- The person in charge will then check your ID without any contact and you will have to load the baggage on the conveyer belt that will transfer the luggage to your flight back home.
- During the security check expect a contactless form of new checking which will be done with the help of a machine through which you will enter and leave.
Inside The Airport:
Once inside the airport people are following rigorous social distancing norms. Some seats are vacated and marked with a large red ‘X’ in order to let the passengers stay away from each other as much as possible. Not all the washrooms are functioning and the stalls are marked off with the same large X. If you are hungry you can get some food at the food court where only 2-3 shops or eating joints will be available like KFC, pizza hut/dominos, and Starbucks. The dustbins are also marked out with labels saying ‘hazardous material’ for passengers and travelers to dispose of used gloves, masks or shields safely.
While Boarding The Flight:
The boarding procedure for the passengers begins with the airline crew calling out the seat numbers row-wise (from A to F) in order to minimize the crowd at once. The passengers also strictly follow protocol and stand at least 6 feet away from each other while boarding the flight, unlike the usual situation where people used to stand very close to each other during this process. Before entering the flight you will be given a kit consisting of a small Sanitiser bottle, a face shield, and a 3 ply mask. Your temperature will be checked on the gate of the aircraft.
On entering the plane you will witness the flight attendants all dressed in PPE kits standing to welcome you without saying anything. You must know that the entire plane goes through a very strict and rigorous sanitization procedure before the passengers are even allowed to let in. the exteriors, interiors including the baggage carries, every corner is cleansed before the flight even takes off.
Note: No food will be provided on board.
Things to remember:
- Maintain social distances at all occasions from leaving your home to reaching your destination.
- Eat well before your flight commences at home and keep a bottle of water for yourself.
- You can also buy your own PPE kits just to be extra careful.
- Keep your own bottle of sanitizer
- Strictly follow all the protocols given out to you and be very careful about not touching your face.
Have a safe trip!