Private airlines fare table lacks clarity, says regulator | india | Hindustan Times
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Private airlines fare table lacks clarity, says regulator

india Updated: Dec 09, 2010 00:50 IST
HT Correspondents

Though domestic airlines have put up fares on their websites, as agreed to with the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), the details are far beyond the understanding of an average passenger.

The DGCA has found them to be too "complicated" and "technical".

Airlines were given time till 5 pm on Wednesday to comply with the DGCA directives, which they did, by updating their websites.

However, DGCA sources said the information lacked clarity and transparency and the airline jargon used by them should be made simpler for a layman to understand.

"There are many discrepancies which need to cleared. We are not exactly sure whether the exorbitant fares they had been charging have actually been corrected. The abbreviations that have been used to indicate advance bookings and destinations are beyond comprehension," sources said.

Hindustan Times got some frequent fliers to go through the fare sheets of various carriers but none could make a head or tail out of it.

Destinations for which the fares were quoted could not be made out from the tariff sheet as they were abbreviated.

Some airlines had made it clear that fares did not include passenger service fee, user development fee, transaction fee and service tax making it impossible to calculate the actual fare. Also, the fuel surcharge was given separately.

Some operators carried disclaimers that the fares were subject to change without prior notice.

DGCA chief EK Bharat Bhushan is personally supervising efforts to examine the tariff data for any discrepancy and an official response is likely to be issued by Thursday.

Airlines will have to make the fares information more passenger friendly, a ministry of civil aviation release said.

Airlines said they would comply with all further DGCA directives on the issue.

"If there is any discrepancy, we will resolve it with the DGCA," a Jet Airways spokesperson said.

An Air India spokesperson said the airline was ready to provide any additional information that might be needed. Kingfisher Airlines spokesperson didn't answer calls from Hindustan Times.