Air India on Sunday (July 26) said that phase 5 of Vande Bharat Mission will begin from 1 August to bring back more stranded Indians.
“We will be soon announcing a host of additional flights under Vande Bharat Mission Phase 5 starting from 1st August 2020,” Air India said in a statement.
As the Vande Bharat Mission enters its fifth phase, it will connect India with the USA, Canada, Qatar, Oman, UAE, Singapore, UK, Frankfurt, Paris, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, New Zealand, Philippines, and more.
“Among other destinations, Ph-5 will connect India with USA, Canada, Qatar, Oman, UAE, Singapore, UK, Frankfurt, Paris, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, New Zealand, Philippines & more. Like we did earlier, more destinations & flights will be added as this phase progresses,” Hardeep Singh Puri tweeted.
We will shortly announce the details regarding booking. pic.twitter.com/nz0DP3ABXp
— Air India (@airindiain) July 26, 2020
1. More international destinations will open up in August.
2. Phase 5 will not be a monopoly of Air India. Private airlines will also be part of it as they have been of the ongoing phase 4.
3. SpiceJet will fly to the US and the UK.
4. More flights to the UAE, US, UK, France, Germany — the countries with which India has set up air bubbles.
5. More air bubbles are scheduled to come up. Delhi-Tel Aviv flights are likely to come up after August 15.
6. Air ticket prices of Air India are likely to go down as there will be competition from international airlines as well.
Vande Bharat Mission started in early May as a repatriation initiative by the civil aviation department. Helmed by Air India, the mission proved to be a great success especially as no other international flights were operating during the lockdown period. In July, India resumed international flights in a selective way. As the international services resumed, there were doubts about whether Vande Bharat Mission operations will be on, but now after Air India’s announcement, it is now clear that Vande Bharat Mission has been dovetailed into the official resumption of international flights.
Notably, Air India has already brought back more than 2.5 lakh Indians from as many as 53 countries since the coronavirus pandemic outbreak made most nations across the world go under a complete lockdown.
Mean-while, With 49,931 people testing positive for coronavirus in a day, India’s COVID-19 tally crossed 14 lakh mark today, while the recoveries jumped to 9,17,568. The country’s death toll rose to 32,771 with 708 fatalities being recorded in a day. The fatality from COVID currently stands at 2.3% in India as compared to the global average of about 4%.