Vistara operated its first long-haul flight from Delhi to London on Friday using its newly inducted Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft, the airline said here. The full-service carrier is scheduled to operate special thrice-weekly flights from August 28 to October 24 between the two cities, it said in a statement.
These special flights are being operated under a bilateral 'air bubble' pact signed between India and the UK amid the coronavirus-related travel restrictions. The flight on Friday departed from Delhi at 2.15 am and landed in London at 6.55 am (local time).
Vistara said on August 18 that it was seeking necessary regulatory approvals to operate similar special flights to Paris in France and Frankfurt in Germany. The airline has a fleet of 43 aircraft, including 34 Airbus A320s, one Airbus A321neo, six Boeing 737-800NGs and two Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft.
While it received its first Dreamliner aircraft in February, the second one was received earlier this month. Scheduled international passenger flights continue to remain suspended in India since March 23 due to the coronavirus pandemic. However, special international flights have been operating under the Vande Bharat Mission and various bilateral air bubble pacts.
Since July, India has established such air bubbles with countries like the US, the UK, France, Germany, the UAE, Qatar and the Maldives. India is negotiating with 13 other countries to establish similar bubbles. After a gap of two months due to the coronavirus-triggered lockdown, India resumed domestic passenger flights on May 25.
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