Airlines operating in Bangladesh will be allowed to resume domestic flights again on Friday, August 6, 2021, after the government decided to allow domestic air travel that complies with current COVIOD-19 rules. On Thursday, August 5, 2021, the Bangladeshi government decided to implement a gradual relaxation of the COVID-19 lockdown and allow for the resumption of domestic air travel.
The country’s largest airline, Biman Bangladesh Airlines, will operate two flights from Dhaka to Chattoram and Syedpur and one flight per day from Dhaka to Sylhet, Cox’s Bazar, Rajshahi, Barishal, and Jashore. According to Bangladesh online newspaper, BDNews24.com Biman Bangladesh Airlines spokesperson Tahera Khandaker said, the number of domestic flights will be increased on Saturday. Three from Dhaka to Chattogram and Syedpur and two per day on routes from Dhaka to Sylhet, Cox’s Bazar, Barishal, and Jashore.
US-Bangla Airlines and NOVOAIR
Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport (DAC)-based US-Bangla Airlines spokesman Kamrul Islam also spoke about the resumption of domestic flights on Thursday. Bangladesh’s largest privately owned airlines said it would resume flights from Dhaka to Chattogram, Cox’s Bazar, Syedpur, Jashore, Sylhet, Barishal, and Rajshahi.
Mainly domestic-only airline NOVOAIR has also committed to resuming flights. It will operate six flights a day from Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport (DAC) to Chattogram, Jashore, and Syedpu, and two each to Barishal, Sylhet, Rajshahi, and Cox’s Bazar.
About Bangladesh’s airlines
Biman Bangladesh Airlines
Biman Bangladesh Airlines is the largest airline in Bangladesh and the country’s national flag carrier. Biman has its central hub at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport (DAC) in Dhaka and secondary hubs at Shah Amanat International Airport (CGP) in Chittagong and Osmani International Airport in Sylhet (ZYL). According to the aviation data and statistics website, ch-aviation Biman’s fleet is made up of the following aircraft:
- 6 x Boeing 737-800s
- 4 x Boeing 777-300ERs
- 4 x Boeing 787-8s
- 2 x Boeing 787-9s
- 5 x DHC-8-Q400s
Based at Shahjalal International Airport (DAC) in Dhaka, US-Bangla Airlines is the second-largest airline in Bangladesh after the country’s national flag carrier Biman Bangladesh Airlines. In 2019 US-Bangla Airlines became the first Bangladeshi airline to operate flights to China and has, according to ch-aviation the following aircraft in its fleet:
- 7 x ATR72-600s
- 4 x Boeing 737-800s
- 3 x DHC-8-Q400s
— NOVOAIR (@NOVOAIR) August 5, 2021
Also based at Shahjalal International Airport (DAC) in Dhaka, NOVOAIR operates mostly domestic flights to eight destinations in Bangladesh. According to ch-aviation its fleet is made up of the following aircraft:
- 7 x ATR72-500s
Bangladesh relaxed the lockdown
The Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh or CAAB permitted domestic flights from July 15 to 23 when the national lockdown was lifted for the Eid-ul-Azha festival. The decision was made to allow people to travel home for the Muslim holiday.
Following the relaxation of the COVID-19 lockdown rules and the Eid-ul-Azha festival, Bangladesh saw a sharp increase in new infections with the country recording its largest number of new coronavirus cases and deaths within a single day.
Last Monday the government’s Directorate General of Health Services reported a staggering 15,192 infections and 247 deaths within a 24 hour period.
With the COVID-19 lockdown in Bangladesh now extended until August 10, 2021, it will be interesting to see if allowing the resumption of domestic flights will once more lead to an increase in infections.
What do you think about Bangladesh resuming domestic flights? Is it a good idea or should they have waited until the national lockdown is lifted? Please tell us what you think in the comments.