Travelling is usually a leisure activity for many people. All the travelling we can ever dream of is planning out a vacation or a solo trip to unwind from the tangles of our hectic work commitments and sedentary lifestyle. We often fail to observe that we get a chance to travel. Often, we keep in mind the long and gruelling ‘seminars’ and meetings which are scheduled in other cities or sometimes even overseas. We are bound to look at certain situations in a definite manner.
Most of us, despite using ‘wanderlust’, ‘traveller’, and all the spectacular terms related to travelling to describe ourselves. We tend to sulk and show utter reluctance in travelling for a business meeting that is in a different city. I feel that the people who get to travel by default the norm in their work profile are partially fortunate. If we choose to slide a time slot specifically dedicated to exploring the destination. As we visit with a business purpose, I am sure we will be more zealous, productive, and be earnest employees. Travelling has so many aspects which if unveiled in the best interest of trade, development, and overall growth in all walks of life, can be fruitful.
The ongoing pandemic has taken an excruciating toll on mankind; remorselessly affecting all the resources on which it depends. Due to the prohibition on the mobility of manpower and goods all across the world, trading has been halted since the past four to five months in India. The massive downfall in the world economy and the GDP’s of various countries has left a magnanimous negative impact on the overall structure of society.
The government of India had imposed a very strict lockdown across all its states and union territories, post which, they were forced to proceed with reasonable norms for the upliftment of the lockdown imposed. This might stabilize the trade and economy with slow and steady measures. India is currently in the ‘Unlock 4.0’ phase, and there are minute changes in the rules and regulations for trade, business, and travel. Here is how you can travel in lockdown following all the rules.
Some mandatory rules which are common in all states:-
- All the citizens shall strictly adhere to the ‘7 a.m. to 7 p.m.’ mobility rule, after which heavy charges may get imposed on the individual violating the same.
- Elderly people, pregnant ladies, and minors are to stay home and not travel, exclusive of any medical emergencies.
- A very few sectors of the working class individuals have been allowed to resume their on-field projects. The government is still emphasizing on ‘work from home’ culture for all other industries.
Interdistrict travelling is still an issue by the state governments, keeping in mind the outrageous spread of COVID 19. Interdistrict travelling norms are easing down to allow private vehicles as well as cabs to cross the district boundaries without a pass. The states like Maharashtra, Gujarat, Delhi, Tamil Nadu, and Uttar Pradesh have not eased the rules for inter-district travelling. Hence, a travel pass is strictly a must.
Post the ‘Unlock 1.0’ decision, boundaries of some states have been opened to allow migrants to return to their native places. Inter-State travelling is only possible if you have a travel pass and a valid reason for the travel. Some states on the peak of the outrageous spread of COVID 19, are sealing their borders with the neighbouring states. It is depending on mutual decisions to temper down the spread of the disease. Some classic examples include Karnataka – Maharashtra, Karnataka – Tamil Nadu, Gujarat – Rajasthan, and Gujarat – Maharashtra.
For travel agency owners, COVID 19 has been no less than a horrendous dream come true. The travel agencies are facing humongous loses. Unlike industries which are trying to get back in business and applying business strategies to revive their economy. The travel agencies have collapsed since the inception of the lockdown. The high number of cases provide absolutely no light at the end of the tunnel. The problems below are severe for the agencies:-
- The pre-booked flight, train, and bus reservations off-air suddenly by the clients. That’s already a huge loss to cope up with.
- There is a considerable increase in insurance rates and debts. Without recovery through actual business.
- The vehicles available for hire are not in use for many days and hence restarting them will involve a huge maintenance cost.
The travel agencies are appealing for government relief measures. Along with contention for road tax, insurance claims, and some subsidies for rental vehicle loans.
The tourism industry appears to look glum across the globe as it is one of the most revenue-generating industries in any country. Indian tourism contributes to 10% of the country’s total GDP. Moreover, the stagnancy of the business of the industry is a major reason for concern. The tourism industry and travel agencies are sailing in the same boat of losses. There was an impromptu cancellation of pre-planned national and international tours. The high insurance debts, the bankruptcy on a large scale, the loss of jobs of tour guides and their strikes in the same concern are going on even now. And also, the average time to cope up with lose are some of the major issues.
E Pass/ Medical certificate
E pass can be issued from the website https://serviceonline.gov.in/epass/ for whatever period you need. The coronavirus outbreak can only vanish by maintaining social distancing. Hence, the provision of an e-pass makes it easy to tackle the situation. An e pass only clears in cases of essential service providers or medical cases.
Modes of Travelling
The government has allowed inter-district travel with the assistance of the aviation industry to take maximum precautions. The local trains and buses are not yet available to help people travel from one place to another. Personalized vehicles and cabs are moving as a mode of transport with an e pass in the hotspot areas.
Living off the tourism-dependent people
People who have a career in the tourism industry are not receiving their salaries for the past four months. Some are leaving from their respective travel agencies, owing to the recession in the industry. Some have raised their voices against the injustice and have appealed to the government for reasonable norms in their support.
Life is very unpredictable. None of us knew that life would seem like this. So many of us had summer plans, which we had to cancel owing to some commitments. But at the end of the day, we all regret and find it difficult to adapt to this new normal. This pandemic has made us realize that you don’t just need cash to travel. Most of us need to prioritize travelling and enjoy and cherish every single chance we get to explore a new destination.