Direct passenger flights from India to Canada resumed on Monday as the Ministry of Transport lifted the months-long ban imposed due to the high number of cases of COVID-19.
The Ministry of Transport said in a Twitter post that direct flights from India could land in Canada, but travelers must be negative for the COVID-19 test from an approved laboratory at New Delhi Airport within 18 hours of departure. Must be.
“From 00:01 Eastern Standard Time on September 27, direct flights from India can land in Canada with additional public health measures,” the agency said.
“Travelers must prove that the COVID-19 molecular test from the approved Genestrings Laboratory at Delhi Airport is negative within 18 hours of the scheduled departure of a direct flight to Canada.”
Air Canada flight data show that a direct flight from Delhi landed at Toronto’s international airport early Monday morning.
However, one family trip has questioned whether the ban on direct flights had the intended effect.
Hari Gopal Garg and his wife, Komal Garg, were to travel from Toronto to India to adopt a girl, Caveli, and return to Canada on April 25, three days after the direct flight was banned.
The family decided to travel to two other countries and make a long journey home so that Garg could return to work and resume their lives.
Garg and his family began their journey on June 8th, traveling from India to Paris and Mexico six days later before landing in Canada. Their trip included a three-day stay in Mexico and a COVID-19 test at all stops.
“We were very nervous,” he said on Monday.
“You are contacting so many people along the way. You are changing flights. You are staying at a hotel. It’s like the government has created more ways to spread COVID. Otherwise, you can come directly without having too many touchpoints. “
The family spent about $ 6,000 on a trip, including a hotel stay. Otherwise, the trip would have cost them about $ 2,000.
“I don’t think the no-fly zone helped at all,” Garg said.
“It caused more problems for those who truly traveled and had good reason. It created more problems, more money, and more mental stress. , It did not solve any purpose. “
However, Mr. Garg is “satisfied” with the resumption of intercountry flights, as there are many seniors and families with children who may not have been able to make a long and costly trip to Canada. I said I was doing it.
“I hope the government will make some rational decisions in the future without hidden political agendas,” Garg said.
“Think about those who are suffering for these and then make some wise decisions.”
Transport Canada announced in a news release last week that it has extended the ban on all direct commercial and private passenger flights from India to Canada.
After the ban ended, the airline said it would check travelers’ COVID-19 test results to ensure that fully vaccinated passengers had uploaded information to the ArriveCAN mobile app or website.
Travelers coming from India to Canada by indirect route must obtain a negative COVID-19 molecular test from a third country other than India within 72 hours of departure before continuing their trip to Canada.
By Maan Alhmidi and Hina Alam