The Tamil Nadu government has agreed to the resumption of flight services from the State as decided by the Center. Initially the state had suggested that flights be resumed only after May 31. However, it has now agreed that flight services can be resumed for the convenience of passengers.
Guidelines for domestic air travel to Tamil Nadu:
The Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) that passengers desiring to fly into and out of Tamil Nadu have to follow are as follows:
– All inbound domestic air travelers will have to register themselves on state-run portal, TNePass (https://tnepass.tnega.org)
– Registrations on TNePass to be done after purchase of flight tickets
– State will request all carriers to demand for TNePass before allowing passengers to board at origin
– All asymptomatic air passengers landing in TN will have to undergo mandatory home quarantine for 14 days
– If passengers don’t have home quarantine facilities, state quarantine facilities will be made available
– Passengers will have to provide information on residence details, symptoms, COVID-19 test results if applicable, and whether or not passenger is under quarantine
– Passengers arriving in TN will not be allowed outside destination airports without TNePass verification
– Drivers of vehicles to pick up inbound passengers to undergo mandatory home quarantine for 14 days if physical contact with a passenger takes place
The Ministry of civil aviation has made it clear to all domestic flight operators that the protocol will be strictly enforced.
The protocol includes all the precautionary and preventive measures that need to be taken to curb the novel Coronavirus transmission.
After registering themselves on TNePass portal, the passengers have to sign a declaration that states that they have ot been living in a containment zone, they do not have any fever or other COVID-19 symptoms, have been tested for Coronavirus or have not been asked to keep themselves under quarantine.
In addition, passengers will have to declare that, if demanded by the state authorities, they will quarantine themselves.
They have to declare that they are eligible to travel.
If any information provided by passengers turns out to be incorrect, they shall be liable for penal action.
If more than one member of a family is travelling, their information will be given on TNePass portal under ‘add family member.’
The state government will issue a travel permit with a QR code which will be sent to passengers’ email address or mobile number.
Details of entry pass will have to be provided to airport authorities before taking a boarding pass.
Once the flight lands in Tamil Nadu, passengers will have to show the registration on TNePass portal before exiting the airport.
Medical screenings will take place in the state’s airport and asymptomatic persons will have to quarantine themselves for 14 days after arrival. If a person does not have a house or a place to self-quarantine, he/she will have to update the information on the portal and have to go for institutional quarantine.
After entering the state, travellers using their own car or rented car, will have to provide car details on the portal.
Pick-ups by a driver or any one else (one person allowed to pick a passenger) will have to stand in designated spots in order to maintain social distancing measures.
All passengers leaving from Tamil Nadu airports will have to go to stipulated health tests before boarding the flight.
Guidelines for airport authorities
All airports should have provision of infrared thermometers to check the temperature of passengers.
A proper queue should be maintained at all times at the airport to maintain social distancing.
Airport officials directly dealing with the passengers shall use protective gears, PPE and face masks.
Symptomatic patients will have to be taken to isolation facilities by airport staff members.
All luggage will be disinfected at the airport.
Any airport official who is facing any symptom for COVID-19 infection should immediately get tested via RT-PCR test.
Passengers will be sent to health check-up desks in a group of 20 as per social distancing protocols.
All these measures listed by the Tamil Nadu government should be adhered to by all passengers in order to avoid any kind of possible transmission. It is to note that the protocol will be strictly enforced after the airlines are resuming operations after two months of being suspended.