Domestic air fares to go up by 30% this festive season

ticketAir travellers should not expect any relief from sky-high domestic airfares this festive season. Prices are up by over 30%, since August, despite airlines increasing domestic flights this coming winter.

The Aviation Ministry has approved the domestic winter schedule of 11,886 weekly flights, up from the summer figure of 11,541. Air India, Jet Airways and Alliance Air will operate less domestic flights than their summer schedule and other airlines have added some flights, said sources.

“One-way fares on all important metro routes like Delhi to Mumbai or Kolkata are about Rs 10,000 if the ticket is bought within seven days of travel date. Earlier fares would shoot up during peak travel seasons like Puja holidays or Diwali. Now they are consistently high and will remain so unless the capacity increases with the new Tata airlines or fuel prices drop or there is some miracle,” said Anil Kalsi, of Delhi-based Ambey Travels.

The fares are about 25% to 30% higher than the summer rates.

Weekly domestic flights statistics

Winter 2011: 13,541 (trouble starts in Kingfisher)
Summer 2012: Slightly over 13,000 (Kingfisher has over 2,500 flights but keeps reducing them before shutting down on Sept 30)
Winter 2012: 10,935
Summer 2013: 11,541
Winter 2013: 11,886
Impact on fares: Lower capacity, higher losses and operating costs send fares shooting by over 30% this winter over summer

Source: The Times of India

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