Tuesday, September 05, 2017

No-frills airline sparks price war after it launches flights to the Indian city of Mumbai for just £150 one-way or £350 return

Forget the Costa del Sol – India is becoming the latest front in an air fare war between budget airlines.
A little known no-frills airline has unveiled plans to launch direct flights to India for around £150, with a return trip costing around £350.
This is almost £100 less than the cheapest return flight from Britain to Mumbai in October advertised on flight comparison website Skyscanner.
Scoot, which is a subsidiary of Singapore Airlines, told the Times of India it aims to launch ultra-low cost fares from Europe to cities including Mumbai and Delhi.
It hopes to use its so-called ‘fifth freedom’ privilege, which enables airlines to carry passengers between two foreign countries as a part of services that connect with their home country.
The catch for those who live in the South of England is that they may have to fly from Manchester to benefit from the bargain basement fares – should they ever become available.
Scoot currently operates most of its UK flights to Manchester to avoid competing with its parent, Singapore Airlines.
But India’s two biggest no-frills airlines SpiceJet and IndiGo, are also said to be planning direct routes to Gatwick Airport.
This means those living in or near the capital could soon be able to snap up low cost fares to India.
Scoot’s operations are currently concentrated in the Far East and Australia, flying to Sydney, Melbourne, Bangkok, Hong Kong and Manila.
But the airline – whose slogan is ‘escape the ordinary’ - also offers direct flights from Singapore to Athens costing from around £350 return.
Some passengers will rightly be sceptical about whether these super-cheap fares to India will ever become available.
Ryanair backtracked on a pledge it made in 2014 to launch flights to New York for under £10.
05/09/17 James Salmon/Daily Mail