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India-UAE Travel Ban: Why I Decided To Fly From Delhi To Dubai Onboard A Charter Flight

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India-UAE Travel Ban: Why I Decided To Fly From Delhi To Dubai Onboard A Charter Flight

What was supposed to be a snappy 2-week visit to India, quickly turned into a headbanging situation with all the flight bans – leading to multiple flight cancellations, rebookings and no acknowledgements on refunds.

By the time the India-UAE travel ban was extended for the second time around I had completely lost all faith in normal passenger flights. Waiting for the government to organize flights to bring back UAE residents from India seemed like quite a coin toss… will it happen… will it not?! If yes then when and etc.

Being a Dubai resident with multiple responsibilities on my plate, I became desperate to return to Dubai AKA my second home. And with rumours trickling in of the travel ban extending until the end of May, private jets and charter flights began to appear as my ONLY option.

The only aspect holding me back was the cost… OBVIOUSLY and of potentially being scammed but after some due diligence, I decided to take my chances with a charter flight back to Dubai

How did I find contacts for the charter you ask?

My desperate whizzing brain joined ALL the ‘Indian UAE expat’ groups on Facebook:

  • ‘Indian expats in Dubai’
  • ‘UAE Indians’
  • ‘Indians in Dubai’
  • and etc.

And by chance, I came across a post asking if Indians stuck in India are looking to get on a charter flight to Dubai.

With butterflies in my stomach and a random rush of adrenaline, I quickly messaged the organisers mentioned in the post…

…and cried myself to sleep knowing I’d have to shell out $3,300 (around AED13k) for the private flight.

PSA: All flights are subject to approval by the UAE ministry of aviation (UAE’s General Civil Aviation Authority, GCAA)

There are several charter flights operating from India to the UAE, however, ALL are subject to approval. A number of flights and individuals have been rejected from coming back in a charter (not sure why but that is also another risk).

I was made aware that flights consisting of vital sector employees such as doctors, engineers and other such professions – who may be required back in the UAE on an urgent basis – are usually approved much easily. This, however, by NO means is the OFFICIAL selection process, but just information passed to me through the grapevine. 

Here is a list of some authorised charter flight providers:

  • Enthral Aviation
  • Air Charter Service India
  • Vision Aviation
  • Jetex

The ‘Iftar For India’ Initiative Will See Meals Donated For Every Order On Talabat Tomorrow

If you’re going to order as you would on a delivery app, you may want to consider Talabat. 

One order on Talabat tomorrow (Sunday, May 9) will be given back by the food delivery platform to the World Food Programme to help communities affected by the COVID-19 pandemic in India. 

Talabat’s CEO, Tomaso Rodriguez, says it truly wants to play its part in supporting India and its people

‘In the MENA region, we have a large, thriving Indian population, especially in many of the markets we operate in. The beauty that the people of India bring to the world – the food, the culture, the love of cricket, in many aspects is unrivaled! We want our Indian community, our restaurant partners, our customers, our colleagues, and our riders to know that we are truly with them.’

Read more here. 

 

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