Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Air travel to get cheaper for Kerala expats?

Thiruvananthapuram: There is good news for Kerala expats travelling frequently. Soon, they will be able to fly from the country to any global destination at discounted rates. Norka-Roots, a public sector undertaking of the Non-Resident Keralites (NRK) Affairs Department, has entered into negotiations in this regard with major air carriers, including Emirates, Kuwait Airways, Qatar Airways, Indigo and others.

“We will soon ink a pact with Qatar Airways. Negotiations with Emirates, Kuwait and Indigo are progressing at the right pace,” said K Varadarajan, resident vice-chairman, Norka-Roots. In August, Norka had entered into a pact with Oman Air which assured seven per cent cut in airfare for their travel to or from India.
Varadarajan said once Norka and Qatar Airways enter into an agreement, the latter can offer NRK a 10 per cent cut in airfare, which could be availed for return flights also. “The offer can be availed by NRKs possessing the Norka-issued identity card. In our agreement with Oman Air, we didn’t have the space for bargaining. However, with Qatar Airways willing to provide a 10 per cent discount, we expect others to follow suit,” Varadarajan said. 

Norka-Roots CEO Harikrishnan Namboothiri said discussions were mainly being held with airlines offering services to Gulf countries. NRK Affairs Department feels the cut in airfare will provide some respite to those expats who travel three to four times a year.
22/01/19 Dileep V Kumar/New Indian Express