Tuesday, December 03, 2019

Foreign trips may pinch fliers as airfares surge

New Delhi/Mumbai: For those who haven’t booked well in advance, international travel this winter will hit your pocket hard. Fares on key routes to the US and Europe are up almost threefold in some instances with the grounding of Jet Airways, which was the second-largest international carrier from India until it stopped flying in April. The lack of bargains has prompted some to give up holiday travel plans.
Average fare data for December show a big jump from last year for tickets booked close to the date of travel. A Delhi-Paris ticket is priced at Rs 1,14,642 against Rs 40,020 in December last year, according to travel aggregator ixigo.
A Mumbai-London ticket will cost Rs 1,23,021 against Rs 53,041. Fares will stay high until carriers fill the gap created by Jet’s exit, analysts said.
“Demand for winter travel is fairly high and are pushing the fares north. While the domestic capacity has bounced back, it will still take some time to replace Jet’s nonstop capacity to Europe and US,” said ixigo CEO Aloke Bajpai. “While international airlines have recently announced an increase in flight frequencies to Europe for the winter, till the capacity gap is fully restored, airfares will continue to remain high for some time.”
The India-London sector could see new flights, with Vistara and IndiGoNSE -0.78 % possibly starting them next year, but other routes will have to wait. Vistara is also looking at adding flights to New York or San Francisco next year and US-based carriers have also announced plans to increase connectivity to India.
03/12/19 Mihir Mishra/Economic Times
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