Monday, December 07, 2020

It took 48-hour detour journey and $10,000 for this Indian dad and daughter to return to Australia

Mr Jain had to rush to India in September this year to attend to his sick father.

“My wife and my two school going kids stayed behind and I flew to India to be with my dad and took my youngest daughter along,” Mr Jain told SBS Hindi.

Mr Jain reached India in time to meet his father before he passed away.

“Since then, I made multiple attempts to return but it was so hard to get a ticket to come back home,” he says.

Mr Jain told SBS Hindi he booked his tickets twice and each time the airlines bumped him and his daughter off.

“I work as a forklift driver and I had to return to work. Then I researched a bit and found that there was a possibility to return but it would take time and money,” he says.

Mr Jain travelled from Kerala to Karnataka in Southern India to catch a flight from Bengaluru to the Maldives.

He then flew onwards to Colombo in Sri Lanka after spending a night in Male.

“I figured that India and Australia do not have a travel bubble nor do India and Sri Lanka. But Sri Lankan Airlines is correctly flying to Australia. So I reached Colombo via Male as India has an arrangement with the Maldives currently,” Mr Jain said.

“We had no option but to take this route to return home and we have spent close to $10,000 in business class tickets to do so,” he says.

After 48 hours, Mr Jain and his infant daughter finally landed in Melbourne on Monday morning.

“We are now undergoing quarantine and hopefully will be reunited with my wife and kids around December 22,” he says.

Mr Jain and his daughters are among the first batch of passengers to arrive in Melbourne on Monday as Melbourne Airport welcomed its first international flights in more than five months.

07/12/20 SBS Hindi

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