As many as 30 lakh people boarded domestic flights in June to travel within India after the number of Covid-19 cases declined.
As many as 30 lakh people boarded domestic flights in June to travel within India after the number of Covid-19 cases declined. This was a substantial increase post the second wave in May, where 19.8 lakh travelled with flights. In order to take passengers, 31,700 departures took place last month. This has also increased from last year where 21,696 departures took place in June 2020.
According to Kinjal Shah, Vice President & Co-Group Head, Icra, 1,100 average departures took place on a daily basis in June and this is significantly higher than the average of 700 departures in a day last year in June. The number also remained higher from 900 daily departures that took place in May this year. One flight is carrying 94 passengers now.
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The flight capacity in June was reduced to 50 per cent of pre-Covid levels as the new Coronavirus cases and viral strains emerged. Now, the Ministry of Civil Aviation has announced the capacity to be increased to 65 per cent till July 31, 2021.
However, despite some sequential growth in travel demand is still stressed on the back of the second Covid-19 wave, Icra said in a press note. Shah said that even though 30 lakh people have travelled in a month, people have been limiting their travel to only when it’s necessary. Apart from this, the travel also remained restricted due to state-wise restrictions.
In order to sail through the dampened demand, the Ministry of Finance on July 1, has announced a scheme that can provide financial support to 10,700 regional level tourist guides, and travel and tourism stakeholders. According to the government, these stakeholders will be eligible to get a loan up to Rs 10 lakh each, whereas tourist guides can avail loans of up to Rs 1 lakh each.
“This is expected to provide the much-needed-liquidity support to the TTS, which in turn is expected to boost the overall travel and tourism sector, of which aviation remains a key beneficiary. Additionally, to provide an impetus to the tourism industry, the finance ministry announced a scheme to issue one-month tourist visas free of charge to first five lakh customers, validity of which is until March 31, 2022 or issuance of five lakh tourist visas, whichever is earlier. This is a right step towards a demand push for the airlines sector, primarily directed at inbound international travel,” Icra said in the report.