190122 air india express
Air India Express flights on Oman routes will only accept passengers with a valid visa. Image Credit: Supplied

Muscat: Air India Express has issued a notice alerting passengers bound for Oman that only those with an existing visa or an employment visa will be allowed to travel.

Those who have renewed their existing visa after its expiry, are also eligible to travel to Oman. Passengers with a newly issued visa will not be accepted for flying, the notification from Air India Express says.

Oman resumed normal commercial airline operations from October 1 with a new set of COVID-19 compliant standard operating procedures for passengers arriving into Oman. An air bubble established between Oman and India has been effective from 1 October which is valid till 30 November this year, per an official announcement.

The designated carriers of both the countries are now permitted to operate services between Oman and India with certain conditions. For flights from Oman to India, the carriers can only carry Indian nationals stranded in Oman, Overseas Citizens of India (OCI) cardholders holding Omani passport and, Omani nationals including diplomats. Necessarily the diplomats must have visas issued by Indian mission in any category covered under Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) guidelines issued on June 30 this year and which has been amended since then from time to time.

Valid permit

For flights from India to Oman, the conditions stipulate that the Omani nationals as well as resident cardholders can be carried by the airlines, and further specifies that Indian nationals carrying valid residency permit as mandated by Oman’s laws can be carried only if their destination is Oman.

Air India Express has recently announced flights operational under phase 7 of the Vande Bharat Mission, from Muscat, Oman to Indian cities of Delhi, Hyderabad, Chennai, Ahmedabad and Mumbai, operational from 1 to 30 November.

Oman has not resumed issuance of any visas, although expired visas due for renewal are being renewed.