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Covid-19 impact: No food service on domestic flight of less than 2 hours

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on April 12, 2021

The new norms will come into effect from April 15.

Food and beverage will not be served on domestic flights of less than two hours, according to the latest regulations announced by the Civil Aviation Ministry as part of precautions against the spread of Covid-19.

On Monday, the Ministry issued an office memorandum prescribing new norms which will come into effect from April 15.

Memorandum

Quoting guidelines, issued by Health Ministry, the memorandum said that there is increasing evidence that the mutant variants are driving the pandemic in their country of origin. So far, the three SARS-CoV-2 variants in circulation, the UK, South Africa and Brazil variants, have been detected in different countries. All three variants have demonstrated increased transmissibility, as reported by World Health Organization.

“The Ministry of Civil Aviation, considering the increasing the threat of Covid-19 and its variants, has decided to review on-board meal services in domestic flight of operations,” it said. Accordingly, provision has been amended for in-flight meal. Last year, the Ministry allowed airlines to provide meals but with certain conditions. Now, it has been said “Airlines may serve pre-packed snacks/meals/pre-packed beverages as per policy of the airlines, where-in the flight duration is two hours or more,” subject to some conditions.

Conditions include use of disposable tray set-up, plates, and cutlery. Hot and cold beverages will be provided only in disposable cans/containers/bottles/glasses. There will be no pouring services. The servicing of in-flight meals to be staggered among the adjacent seats as far as possible.

Impact

Restriction on in-flight meals will have some impact on no-frill airlines such as Indigo and Spicejet as they sell customised meal during flight.

Published on April 12, 2021

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