According to a Gulf News report, airfares to and from the UAE will be higher in the first week of Ramadan, beginning March 23, compared to last year, with trips to India, the United Kingdom, and the Philippines already showing a 10-25% rate increase.
Typically, the first two weeks of Ramadan are slower in terms of flight demand, which then increases significantly until the Eid holidays. There is a change this year. One reason could be that this year’s Ramadan coincides with school breaks, which means that demand for travel will skyrocket. The ticket prices certainly reflect this.
Round-trip Economy tickets from the UAE to India increased from Dh990 to Dh1,316 (for travel between March 21 and March 30), up from Dh935-Dh1,018 last year. A flight to Manila would cost Dh2,728 in comparison to Dh1,960 in 2019.
Similarly, travel to the United Kingdom, the United States, and popular European destinations will see similar increases compared to March 2022. In fact, fares have increased by 15% since last month (February).
Travel agents advise passengers to look for flights early, before peak booking periods. “With fluctuating ticket prices, set up a Price Alert and be among the first to see when prices drop with any additional discounts, or if new flights are added on established routes,” said Raheesh Babu, Musafir.com’s Chief Operating Officer.
“Many families will be travelling during this time, and because many will require more than three or four tickets, it is best to book them as soon as possible.”
While outbound traffic is seeing price increases of 15 to 25%, inbound fares from India are also up 10%.
“In India, schools are closed for the holidays around the same time,” says Afi Ahmed, Managing Director of Smart Travels.
Inbound travel will be extremely high beginning March 21. The next two months will be busy for inbound Indian tourists. In terms of outbound travel, many blue-collar workers return to their home countries during Ramadan, which results in slightly higher airfares.”
Inbound travel is most popular during March and April because it is the last month of pleasant weather before peak summer.
Peak Travel Periods
“For the Philippines, it is the first year where travel has no restrictions,” said Geoffrey Salatan, Managing Director of MRG Pinas Travel. “March, June, July, August, and December are peak selling and peak travel period for us. Fares to Manila taper down in the second week of Ramadan before going up again during the Eid break.”
Indicative airfares to popular destinations from the UAE (March 21 to 31)
- Dubai to Mumbai: Dh924
- Mumbai to Dubai: Dh904
- Dubai to Singapore: Dh2,525
- Dubai to Manila: Dh2,943
- Dubai to Zurich: Dh2,865
- Abu Dhabi to London: Dh3,545
- Dubai to London: Dh4,365
- Dubai to New York: Dh4,835
(Source: Inputs from Gulf News)