New guidelines for air travel: Airlines can provide meals, refreshments, and in-flight entertainment
The new regulations allow refreshments and in-flight entertainment with due precautions
The central government has issued revised Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) guidelines for domestic and international travel, permitting carriers to serve pre-packed food, beverages for domestic flights, and hot meals, alcohol onboard International flights.
Entertainment will also be allowed in-flight, said a report by moneycontrol.com.
The online publication reported that Joint Secretary Ministry of Civil Aviation Usha Padhee said the staff onboard aircraft will have to wear a new set of gloves after providing each meal and beverage to the passengers travelling to their destinations.
The government directed airlines to keep disposable tray set-up, plates, and cutlery with no re-use. All beverages like tea, coffee, and others will be in disposable cans, bottles, containers, and glasses. The pouring service will be restricted and beverages will be provided in single-use disposable units.
The government updated the SOP and guidelines as carriers on domestic routes were earlier not permitted to serve any refreshments. In case of international services, airlines were only allowed 'minimum catering,' with pre-packaged meals put on passengers' seats prior to boarding.
Moreover, entertainment will also be allowed in-flight if the airlines want to provide it, as per the new regulations. All entertainment systems are to be cleaned and sanitized before boarding. Disposable earphones or cleaned and disinfected headphones will be given for the travel, as per the report by Money Control.