Friday, November 12, 2021

Flying to the US? Get ready to pay a bomb

Hyderabad: One-way flight ticket costs to various destinations in the US have skyrocketed to Rs 1.50 lakh ever since the country opened its borders for all vaccinated travellers. The Covid-19 pandemic had prompted the US government to close its borders to international travellers from many countries, including India and finally opened up on November 8.

Now with relatives planning to reconnect with their loved ones after more than a year’s separation, airlines ticket prices have gone up. According to travel industry data, a return ticket to the US until October was between Rs 87,000 and Rs 1.02 lakh.

A return ticket to places such as Chicago, New York and Washington have all doubled and the costs have skyrocketed to Rs 3 lakh. Business class tickets, which were available for Rs 3.97 lakh until a few days back, are now being sold at Rs 6 lakh.

Airline sources said people are scrambling for seats with all flights going full. “With limited seats available, these are being now offered at premium prices. Earlier cancelled seats are now being sold at higher prices,” said a senior airline official operating flights to the US.

Agrees Siraj Ansari, owner of Avion Holidays that the prices are exorbitantly higher this time around.

“Considering many people are browsing for the same destinations and flights, the prices on the online portals have been jacked up. The airlines have got a hint of the high demand following which they have surged the prices,” he said.

“Despite this, those who want to travel are still willing to pay the huge sum and board the next flight to the US,” he added.

The rise in ticket prices is no deterrent for travellers from the city as travel agents have been flooded with phone calls since Monday evening, with requests for tickets.

12/11/21 Preeti Biswas/Times of India

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