Fliers are dreading having to travel on short notice. Spot airfares have jumped 30-35% in the last few days because of skyrocketing demand caused by the peak travel season, Air India strike and cut down in operations by Kingfisher Airlines.
Economy tickets on the Delhi-Mumbai sector for Thursday were being sold at Rs 10,000-Rs 20,000. Business class fares touched Rs 50,000.
“Airfares have gone through the roof. Prices have increased by over 30%. There is no such thing as low-cost airlines anymore,” said Rajji Rai, special adviser to the Travel Agents Association of India.
“The fares are shooting almost by the minute. There's a complete mismatch between demand and supply. Low-cost carriers have become the same as legacy carriers” Rai said.Civil aviation minister Ajit Singh on Wednesday said he would ask the aviation regulator, Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), to monitor the fares.
But a senior aviation ministry official said the DGCA wouldn’t be able to do much.
“Spot fares are always higher. Airlines file their tariff with the DGCA in advance and airfares aren’t regulated by the government,” the official said.