International Flights to and from India Means for US-India Travel

Changes after Regular International Flights Resume to and from India

During Covid, there was a ban on flight operations and now the suspension on international scheduled flights has been removed. After two years of the pandemic, the government decided to remove the ban from regular flights on 27, 2022. India’s decision to resume regular international flights to and from India provides great relief to the recovery of the aviation economy and travelers as well.

International Flights to and from India Means for US-India Travel

Air Bubble Flights already operating from India:

Air bubble flights were operated before and these were specially negotiated arrangements with countries. These were operated after the factors such as health requirements, and reciprocity of travel permissions between the countries. India used to make air bubble arrangements with a total of 37 countries. But, nonstop routes between USA and India cost almost double the fare for regular international travel.

But, nonstop routes between USA and India cost almost double the fare for regular international travel. The preference for nonstop air bubble flights over one-stop flights burnt holes in the pockets of travelers.

Changes after resume in regular international flights:

Both Indian and international will be able to fly as per the original bilateral air-service agreements. This also indicates that there will not be any restrictions on the number of flights put in place on account of air bubbles. India’s bilateral air service agreement with the US permits airlines of both countries to fly an unlimited number of flights in-between the two countries.

The new USA to India routes:

With international flight operations returning to the pre-pandemic schedule the new flight’s routes are SFO to BLR and Seattle to BLR which will take off in May and October 2022 respectively.

Increased service and seat availability:

  • As a result, the Emirates which is the largest foreign carrier flying to India will restore its operations to pre-pandemic frequency. 72 weekly flights connecting nine major Indian cities with the US via Dubai.
  • Air Canada will resume 21 weekly return flights to Delhi from Canada.
  • Fights to Delhi and Mumbai will be doubled by Lufthansa and Swiss International Airlines.

No Restrictions:

During the pandemic, travelers with Indian passport holders were subject to airline-specific restrictions onboarding in India. British Airways, Air France, KLM, Lufthansa, and Virgin Atlantic barred Indian passport holders from boarding flights in India to travel beyond Europe. Now, most of the European carriers, except British Airways, have relaxed the restriction for travelers holding an Indian passport.

Suspended tourist visas restoration:

From March 16, 2022, the government of India has restored all long-term valid tourist visas. It was restored for nationals and citizens of 156 countries, including the United States. The long-duration tourist visas, paper and electronic, had been suspended for entry to India since March 2020.

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