Aviation ministry hikes domestic flight capacity to 72.5%
The ministry of civil aviation on Thursday issued an order allowing domestic airlines to increase flight capacity to 72.5% from 65% with immediate effect.
“After review of the current status of Scheduled Domestic Operations viz-a-viz passenger demand for air travel in terms of purpose specified in the initial order... is further modified as under: 65% capacity may be read as 72.5% capacity. This shall take effect from the date of issue of this order and will remain in place until further orders,” the statement said.
In July, the ministry of civil aviation (MoCA) hiked the capacity of domestic flights to 65% from the earlier 50%.
For the first time after May 2020, the government had cut down capacity of domestic airlines from 80% (of the summer schedule 2020) to 50% from June 1 (in an order dated May 28) to safeguard airlines’ viability battling weak finances in the aftermath of the sudden spike in Covid-19 infections across the country, a slump in passenger traffic and passenger load factor.
After complete flight operation suspension for two months, the government permitted domestic flights from May 25, 2020, with 33% capacity of their pre-Covid-19 levels which was then increased to 45% in June and so on.
Domestic flight operations have been allowed at present while scheduled international passenger flights still remain suspended but limited special international passenger flights have been operating since July 2020 under air bubble arrangements formed with 28 countries, including the UK.