Domestic airfares that have gone through the roof in recent weeks may see a drop of 5% to 20%.
Domestic carriers on Monday assured the aviation regulator of cuts in the highest fare slab after the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) expressed concern over “exponential increase in airfares”.
In his meeting with the CEOs of domestic carriers, DGCA chief EK Bharat Bhushan pointed out the “phenomenal” rise in fares though the aviation turbine fuel price had seen a marginal increase — 16% in June when compared to the same month last year.
HT reported on June 7 that spot fares on domestic sector had gone up by as much as 30-35% due to the peak travel season, scaling down of operations by Kingfisher Airlines and the Air India strike.
"Domestic airlines have now proposed reduction of airfares in the highest fare bucket on various routes in the domestic network between 5 to 20%," an aviation ministry statement said.
Airline bosses were also told that prices of tickets varied hugely from a carrier to carrier on the same sector.
"We found an airline offering a fare of Rs 24,000 on a particular route, while another offering Rs 9,000 on the same route and on the same day," an official said.
Many times, opening fares that were high were brought down as the date of departure approached. "This may result in passengers buying tickets in advance ending up paying more than those buying later," the ministry said.
It also said while fewer people flew in May than in the corresponding period in 2011, "the fares have seen a disproportionate spurt".