Air Bubble Agreement between India and Oman: A Step Towards Normalizing Travel Amidst the Pandemic
The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in more ways than one. The global economy has taken a hit, and industries such as travel and tourism have been severely affected. Countries around the world have implemented strict travel restrictions to contain the spread of the virus, resulting in the closure of borders and suspension of international flights.
However, with the pandemic showing no signs of ending anytime soon, countries are now exploring ways to normalize travel while still ensuring public safety. One such step in this direction is the implementation of air bubble agreements.
Air bubble agreements are temporary arrangements between two countries that allow airlines from both sides to operate a specific number of flights with certain restrictions. These agreements help in restoring air connectivity between countries while minimizing the risk of the virus spreading.
India and Oman recently signed an air bubble agreement to allow airlines from both countries to operate flights between them. The agreement came into effect on 1 October 2020 and will remain in place until further notice.
Under this agreement, Air India Express will operate flights between India and Oman, while Oman Air will operate flights between the two countries. The flights will be subject to certain restrictions such as limited capacity, only allowing passengers who meet certain criteria, and following strict health guidelines.
The air bubble agreement between India and Oman is a welcome move for Indian expatriates living in Oman. Many Indians were stranded in Oman due to the suspension of international flights earlier this year. With this agreement, they can now return to India through the designated flights.
The agreement also benefits the tourism industry in both countries, as it allows visitors from India to travel to Oman and vice versa. This can help in reviving the industry that has been hit hard by the pandemic.
While the air bubble agreement is a step towards normalizing travel, it is important to note that it is not a permanent solution. The pandemic situation is constantly evolving, and the agreement may be modified or suspended if the need arises.
In conclusion, the air bubble agreement between India and Oman is a positive development for both countries that can help in restoring air connectivity while minimizing the risk of the virus spreading. As the pandemic continues to impact the world, such agreements between countries can help in normalizing travel and mitigating the economic impact of the pandemic.