Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Airfares take off, head north

Air travel in India is all set to become costlier from November. Most airlines have been making losses, and they cannot take it any more. With more airlines being launched, and the growing competition between them, all had reduced their fares to unsustainable levels.
With the peak season beginning next month, airline officials feel it is the best time to hike fares and cut losses. The extent of the hike is yet to be decided.
In fact, airfares had begun creeping up already. "Even on low-cost airlines, the last-day fare on the Delhi-Mumbai sector was over Rs 7,000, which is almost the amount charged by a full-service airline," said the chief executive officer of a low-cost carrier, who did not want to be identified.
Top officials of airlines, who met in Mumbai last week to form the Federation of Indian Airlines, discussed several formulae to ensure that the fares do not come down below a certain "floor level".
23/10/06 Gaurav Choudhury/Hindustan Times