• Amin Ali, TNN

World in an unchartered territory, those who can jet off in private planes

NEW DELHI: Vacation flights might have been grounded by the novel coronavirus, but air and helicopter charter firms are seeing a surge in interest with offers such as share a jet and pay by the minute use. From being considered a rich family’s indulgence and status symbol, flying private is catching on for those who want to avoid lengthy airport processes and exposure to unknown fellow travellers.

Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport facilitated over 570 charter flights in August alone. And when Delhi International Airport Limited inaugurated a special terminal to cater to private craft at Indira Gandhi international Airport on Thursday, civil aviation minister Hardeep Singh Puri termed it as the ‘need of the hour’ while GBS Raju, business chairman, GMR Airports (India), said the new terminal recognised the growing traffic of private business and leisure travellers.

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