Nearly after four months of suspension of all international flights, the Nepal government decided to resume its operation starting from August 17, 2020. Nepali government cabinet decided it on 20 July. The Nepal government had suspended all domestic and international flights from March 22nd to prevent COVID in the country although there were few chartered flights in operation for purpose of medical goods, rescue peoples from abroad, and sending tourists to their home from the country. Ministry for culture, tourism, and civil aviation will prepare detailed health protocols to resume the operation of international and domestic flights. Different association related tourism was starting a discussion to open the tourism market and now airlines and tourism entrepreneurs welcome the government level decision.
The number of COVID infection is decreasing in the country. There is more number of recover and discharge person than new infected. To date total infected peoples in Nepal are 17,844, in which 11,868 peoples already recovered. 40 total deaths cased due to COVID, are mostly old age and infected early by other diseases. Most of the COVID infections in the country are near the India border. The Himalayan region where tourist travels have less infected and most of the places are zero infected till now so that our tourist destination is fully safe from KOVID-19. Tourist service providers are ready to provide full services.
Nepal government will prepare a report where flights are not restricted, those countries who have already started their international flights; tourists can arrive in Nepal from those countries. The government will develop entire health protocols and other required measures for the incoming flights. About 7.9 percentage of total GDP is relying in tourism but more peoples and their families are relying on tourism income which is out of official data. We are happy that about twenty percent of our tourists can plan to come to Nepal in the autumn season of 2020; it will tide over the tourism industry until the next tourism season (spring - 2021).
Many groups of tourists and individuals were waiting to get Nepal after the international flight is open. Most of the tourist group, who supposed to come to Nepal in March April season of 2020, is waiting to change their flight date which is now possible to arrive after August 17. New inquiry to visit Nepal is still ongoing even in this pandemic situation. There is only one international airport in Nepal, which is Tribhuban International airport in Kathmandu. After less than a year's time, there will be second international airport will be open in Lumbini, the Gautam Budhha International airport.
Nepal Government will not encourage the mandatory 14 days quarantine for tourists. The government will come with a comfortable protocol. Our international airport of Kathmandu is in new shape now after hard working on it during flight stopped after COVID. A very small airport with a narrow place of arrival and departure has changed to make more facilities. The second international airport at the land of Buddha birth (Bhairahawa) Lumbini is also will be in operation.