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Airlines to refund tickets

Confident of its performance even during zero visibility, Air India promises to refund the total ticket fare to passengers who cancel their tickets in case their flight is delayed by more than an hour due to fog.

delhi Updated: Dec 10, 2010 01:43 IST
Sidhartha Roy

When dense fog envelops Delhi this winter, there will be fewer delays and lesser chaos at the airport, or so the airlines claim.

Confident of its performance even during zero visibility, Air India promises to refund the total ticket fare to passengers who cancel their tickets in case their flight is delayed by more than an hour due to fog.

The airline says it has nearly 500 pilots who are trained to land flights using the CAT II and III instrument landing system (ILS).

The ILS guides pilots to land even when the runway is not visible in dense fog.

"Passengers of all classes, irrespective of when they buy a ticket, will get a full refund if they wish to cancel their tickets," said an Air India spokesman.

"A full refund will be offered if a flight is delayed by more than an hour due to fog," he said.

Kingfisher Airlines, too, is promising a complete refund of the ticket amount but only if the flight itself is cancelled.

"In the event of cancellation of a flight, the entire fare will be refunded or guests will be booked on alternate flights again, based on seat availability," said the airline spokesman.

He added that according to civil aviation requirements, an airline is not bound to provide a refund if a flight is delayed or cancelled due to adverse weather conditions.

This is the first time airlines are providing such offers to passengers.

With dense fog expected to descend on the Indira Gandhi International Airport any time now, airlines have already started rostering CAT III trained pilots for early morning and late evening flights.

Meanwhile, budget carriers IndiGo and Go Air, too, said that they have enough CAT III trained pilots and CAT III ILS compliant aircraft to ensure smooth operations.

"All our aircraft are CAT III compliant and 65% of our pilots are trained to use CAT III ILS, which is more than sufficient for our existing network," said a Go Air spokesman.

"We have begun rostering CAT III trained pilots for flights to and from Delhi as per requirement," he said.