Even after the DGCA issues official circular this week for airlines to stop selling flight tickets till further notice but mostly Indian airlines didn’t stop and still selling flight tickets for travel from the 3rd week of May or starting of June.
Searches on country’s mostly airline websites show that they are still selling flight tickets. That’s despite the government saying no decision has been made on allowing flights after the end of the nationwide lockdown on May 3, which means airlines should refrain from selling tickets until authorities give them the go-ahead.
In a Twitter thread, Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri reiterated that no commercial flights will be allowed to operate until the spread of the coronavirus has been controlled and that the lifting of restrictions will only be considered later.
Our views & approach on restarting flights have been clearly stated.
On 2nd April, I said “A decision to restart flights after this period remains to be taken” & reiterated this on 5th. On14th when Lockdown extended, I said “we can CONSIDER lifting restrictions” after Lockdown. pic.twitter.com/LkXKkofKsY— Hardeep Singh Puri (@HardeepSPuri) April 20, 2020Advertisement
India’s top airline Indigo which has more than 45% of market control and Vistara, the local affiliate of Singapore Airlines Ltd is still selling flight tickets both domestic and international from 1st June 2020.
While the other low-cost airline Spicejet and GoAir which has furloughed 90% of its staff, are selling tickets from May 16.
All these four out of country’s top six airlines together controlled around 80% of the local market, which means most customers will suffer if they book their tickets, and restriction on flight operation is not lifted.
Only state-run Air India Ltd. and AirAsia India are not selling any flight tickets as advised by the MoCA and DGCA.
“We are working on that. Hopefully will find ways to resolve soon,” Arun Kumar, the head of India’s Directorate General of Civil Aviation, said in a text message when asked about the sales.
Vistara declined to comment. Representatives at IndiGo, SpiceJet and GoAir didn’t immediately respond to requests for comments.
The DGCA on April 16 said the airlines to refund the full amount of air ticket without levy of any cancellation charges for bookings made during Mar 25-April 14 for travel between April 15 to May 3, 202, which is also not followed by most of the airlines.
Only IndiGo has started processing a full refund to travel agencies and direct customers as per DGCA’s advisory.
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- IndiGo – Process for Credit Shell Utilization
- SpiceJet – Process for Credit Shell Utilization
- GoAir Advisory for Cancellation and Reschedule of Flights
- AirAsia – How to make full use of your Credit Account