Thursday, July 19, 2018

Airfares may go up with hike in security fee component

Airfares will get more expensive if the government’s proposal to hike the security charge on air tickets is realized. The government is mulling increasing the security component of ticket prices to cover up for unpaid dues owed to the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF).

The state-owned Airport Authority of India (AAI) and also private airport operators have flagged the issue with the government. Airport operators say that the present charges are insufficient to cover the cost of security. The number of passengers transiting through Indian airports has risen exponentially while security personnel manning these facilities have remained constant, leading to longer delays.
The component of the fare covering security charge has been unchanged for the past ten years. An official in the Civil Aviation Ministry told Business Standard that the hike may be as low as Rs 50. The passenger service fee has two components – a facilitation charge and a security charge.

The facilitation charge goes towards maintaining airport infrastructure such as escalators, baggage belts, and air conditioning. The security component is disbursed to the CISF, which is tasked with guarding Indian airports.