New rules for passengers taking domestic flight during the lockdown were released by the government today, including mandatory thermal screening before entering airport terminals, use of face masks and displaying "green" status on the Aarogya Setu app. Passengers will also need to do a web check-in at home and obtain a boarding pass before arriving at the airport. In a detailed notification released Thursday morning the Ministry of Civil Aviation issued guidelines to be followed by all passengers regarding check-in and boarding procedures at the origin airport. The new SOPs were announced just days before domestic commercial flight operations from May 25. Airports have also been advised to ensure that maintain social distancing among passengers using chairs by blocking those seats that are not to be used, with proper markers/tapes.
Here are the do's and don't under new SOPs:
Aarogya Setu app must for all
Aarogya Setu app is mandatory for all except children below 14 years of age, the Civil Aviation ministry said. All other departing passengers must be registered on the app on their mobile phones and it will be verified by the CISF or the airport staff at the entry gate of the terminal building, the government said. Those who have not installed the app will be directed to another counter where it may be installed. Passengers showing COVID-19 symptoms or those whose Aarogya Setu status is "red" will not be allowed to enter the terminal, the new rules says.
Manadatory web check-in at home
All passengers must do a web check-in and print out a boarding pass at home.They must also download and print baggage tags/identification numbers to be attached to their luggage. In the initial phase of flights being resumed, only one hand bag and one check-in bag will be allowed per passenger.
Passengers to reach two hours before departure
Passengers should reach airport two hours before the scheduled time of departure. Passengers should travel in an authorised taxi/personal vehicle following the norms speciafied by the Ministry of Home Affairs.
Face, gloves compulsory for passengers
At the airport, passengers will need to wear face masks and gloves before exiting the taxi. They must also have all required documents - including boarding pass, baggage tags and status on Aarogya Setu - available for inspection. Passengers must walk to a thermal screening station where their temperature will be taken.
Senior citizens, pregnant women should avoid travel
The ministry has said vulnerable persons, including the elderly, pregnant women and passengers with health issues should avoid air travel.
Passengers with COVID-19 history won't be allowed
Passengers should not travel if he/she is staying in a containment zone. Passengers who have contracted the virus should also avoid travel, it says.
No meals to be served
Passengers will not be provided meals during the flight, the SOP says, adding passengers will not be permitted to bring their own food. Water bottles will be kept on every seat