Telecom professional Sanjay Sinvhal booked air tickets for Nagpur to Mumbai for his family a month in advance as he knew that airfares would soar during the Diwali weekend.
Despite this, the Powai resident overshot his travel budget allegedly owing to a series of flip-flop communications by Kingfisher airlines.
On November 8, Sinvhal sent an e-mail complaint to the airline management and to the Directorate General of Civil Aviation alleging that the incidents reflected the airline’s strategy to squeeze money from passengers who book tickets in advance.
Sinvhal had booked three Kingfisher Airlines tickets from Nagpur to Mumbai for Rs 7,000 for a journey on November 7. About a week before the travel date, the airline informed him that the flight had been cancelled and gave him a full refund.
Sinvhal then booked three Indigo airlines tickets for November 8 for Rs 7,894. The original cost of the ticket was Rs 15,788 but being an ex-serviceman he got a 50 % discount.
On November 5, Sinvhal claims that a Kingfisher Airlines’ customer care executive informed him that the airline would operate the flight on November 6.
He bought two tickets for Rs 7,000, the price for which he had got three tickets earlier on the same flight. “I booked the tickets because my wife and son had some urgent work in Mumbai,” said Sinvhal.
A few hours before the journey on November 6, the airline sent him a text message stating that the flight was cancelled. “I was so frustrated by their fluctuating updates that I did not react and did not even cancel the ticket,” he added.
The next day, a Kingfisher staff called to say that the flight would be operated on November 7. His wife and son took the flight back to Mumbai while Sinvhal took an Indigo flight the next day.
A spokesperson for the airlines said the airline regretted the inconvenience caused to the passengers. “We are in the process of refunding the fare difference of Rs 1,500 per ticket.”