For the last 17 months, airlines in India are under a capacity cap and a floor and ceiling cap on airfares.
The government has done multiple iterations to its policy and upped the capacity cap to 85 percent of the approved schedule. This means that all airlines can operate up to 85 percent of their approved schedule, and it does not consider the flights that operate under the aegis of RCS – UDAN or charter flights.
This is the highest capacity cap in the last 17 months and could well lead to the opening up of the industry, minus caps in the future. The only block is a third wave of COVID-19.
In February 2020, the last full month of operations before lockdown, airlines in India carried an average of 4,25,179 passengers on 3,136 flights.
Since the capacity is capped to flight count, 85 percent would roughly translate into 2,666 daily departures. On Sunday, September 19, 2021, airlines operated 2,149 flights. The highest, so far, has been on March 5, 2021, when airlines operated 2,398 flights.