Thursday, March 30, 2017

This summer, flying between cities becomes cheaper

Ramakant Desai, a regular train traveller from Pune, took a flight, owing to a sharp drop in prices and more flights to tier-2 cities. "Flights this May are at Rs 3,500, at a cheaper rate compared to last year and we are connected with more routes being added," he said.
This summer vacation; pay less to travel by air within the country as fares have gone down by 30%, compared to last year, travel portals estimate. Competition amid airlines and reduction in oil prices have been the prime drivers for the reduction in prices.
Owing to this trend, travel portals find domestic vacations outpacing international tours with the former growing at 25-27% Y-o-Y and the latter growing between 10-15%, according to data from travel portal Ixigo. "Amid competition, airlines are reducing fares and adding their capacity by introducing newer routes, resulting in a field day for domestic tourists who are shifting from 3 AC in train to flights. Earlier, it was a comparison between 2 A/C and air fares," said Aloke Bajpai, CEO, Ixigo. Data from the portal shows that 15% of rail travellers have shifted to air travel. Bajpai added that the increase is because of middle and bottom of the pyramid vacationers travelling by air. Another reason for domestic vacations to trend is airlines adding newer, offbeat destinations. For instance, Spice Jet has added Delhi-Surat daily services, Vistara airlines have added Leh and Air Asia have added Ranchi, thereby spurring domestic vacations further.
30/03/17 Aparna Desikan/The Times Of India