US Travel Restriction Leads Air India to Slash Frequency of Non-Stops

Air India, which runs about 30 weekly non-stop flights to and from the US, have announced that they will be slashing the frequency of these flights from later this week. 

Air India has also released a schedule of all the cancelled flights to and from America beginning from May 6, 14 and up to the first week of June. The schedule is tentative and will be updated according to the status of the travel restrictions on India.

READ:  India Extends Ban on International Flights till May 31

Besides Air India, United Airlines is the only other aviation firm to operate non-stop flights between the US and India. Since the announcement of the ban, United Airlines has switched to larger capacity planes such as Boeing 787 and 777. They aim to fly in more medical support as cargo to India (alongside a larger number of passengers from India before the ban is enforced).

READ: Here’s the List of Countries who have Banned Travellers from India

The revised schedule of Air India’s cancelled flights include:

The Delhi- San Francisco flight – AI 173/174 between May 6 and June 3 usually taking of on Thursdays.

The AI 183/176- DEL-SFO-Bengaluru (BLR) between May 11 and June 1 of Tuesday.

AI 175/184 – BLR-SFO-DEL between May 13 and June 3 on Day 4 of Thursday.

DEL-Chicago (ORD)-DEL – AI 127/126, of Mondays and Fridays between May 7 and May 21.

AI 105/10 DEL-Newark (EWR)-DEL of Fridays and Sundays between May 9 and May 30.

DEL-EWR-DEL- AI 105/106. of Mondays between May 10 and May 31.

AI 103/104. DEL-Washington (IAD) -DEL of May 7.

AI 103/104. DEL-IAD-DEL of Sundays between May 9 and May 30

AI 104. I AD-DEL of Wednesdays between May 12 and June 2

AI 103. DEL-IAD of Fridays between May 14 and June 4

AI 191/144. BOM-EWR-BOM of May 30.

And a few more flights.

READ: From COVID Tests to Quarantine Rules, These are the State-Wise Travel Guidelines

The US travel ban from India came into effect on May 4, and resulted in one-way flight fares shooting up for flights from India’s main metropolitan cities such as Bangalore, Mumbai and Delhi. 

On May 1, the cheapest flight ticket available to New York started at 7 lakh for an Air India flight. The chances of Indians getting on board from May 2 were slim as a negative COVID 19 report is obligatory to enter the US and getting that test result in 24 hours was likely impossible. This has increased the demand for charter flights from India to the US. However,  charter flights are mostly smaller in size and do not have permit to fly over the Atlantic Ocean.

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