As the holiday and festive season approaches, many people are scrambling to book flights to their hometowns. However, according to a recent Ministry of Civil Aviation draught, flight ticket prices for small towns are expected to rise soon, according to DNA India.
Flying to and from small-town airports will now cost more than before, according to the announcement, because the government has proposed a steep price increase in small airport charges
The latest draft proposes a 30% increase in landing and parking fees for aircraft, as well as a fourfold increase in user development fees, which means that flights to and from small towns could become 30% more expensive.
Clusters of Airports to Experience Price Hike
The draft by the Civil Aviation Ministry has split the airports, which can experience a price hike, into three main clusters.
- Cluster 1: includes 13 airports that cater to one million and more passengers a year
- Cluster 2: includes 32 airports that cater to 0.1 to 1 million passengers a year, and
- Cluster 3: includes 32 airports that cater to less than 0.1 million passengers a year.
The stakeholders of the airports and flights are expected to submit their suggestions to the ministry by Tuesday, February 28, after which the final decision on the hike in the prices of flight tickets will be implemented.
Impact on Commuters
Around 3.5 million commuters will be affected by the price increases in flight tickets if the government approves the new fees for these shorter flights. It should be noted that if the order is approved, this will be valid for all UDAN flights.
Connectivity Through Air Travel to Increase
Although flight costs may increase soon, during the Budget Session 2023, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman mentioned increasing connectivity through air travel and announced 50 new airports in India.
The Ministry of Civil Aviation’s proposal for a steep price increase in small airport charges is expected to raise the cost of air travel for many passengers. However, it is critical to consider the long-term benefits of improved air travel connectivity in India, which will lead to economic growth and development.
(Source: DNA India)