Saturday, September 02, 2023

Mumbai: Airfares for Diwali skyrocket as demand surges but not supply

Diwali is more than two months away, but airfares for travel on certain routes during the festival week have already soared. On Friday, the cheapest return fare available for travel from Mumbai on non-stop flights during the Diwali week to destinations such as Srinagar, Bagdogra and Patna was priced at Rs 35,000 and above.

Return fares on flights to other destinations such as Ranchi, Prayagraj, Jodhpur, Raipur and Kochi were priced at Rs 20,000 and above (see box). From Delhi, the Rs 20,000 and above return fares were to Bagdogra, Mangaluru, Kochi and Patna.

For the Dussehra week, Mumbai-Bagdogra cheapest return fare is currently priced at Rs 25,000.

Aditya Agarwal, CFO, Cleartrip, said: "The upcoming festive season will see a tremendous spike in travel demand. There is a 12% rise in airfares for Diwali compared with 2022. Top destinations such as Bhubaneswar, Bhopal, Nagpur, Varanasi and New Delhi are seeing a strong surge in fares."

Sabina Chopra, COO, corporate travel and head industry relations,, said: "While the demand generally peaks by the first week of September for the festive season, the airfares for travel during this period is higher by at least 10% on these routes. The airfares are higher closer to the travel date, hence it is recommended to book well in advance, especially for such a crucial period when demand is at an all time high with so many people visiting their homes for Dussehra and Diwali."

While demand has surged, supply has been constrained as a number of aircraft in IndiGo, SpiceJet fleet are grounded, while GoFirst suspended flights in May. 

02/09/2023 Manju V/Times of India

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