Kashmir airfares costlier than foreign destinations

SRINAGAR: Travelling to Delhi from Kashmir or to Jammu in a flight has become more expensive than a foreign destination such as Dubai in the face of air traffic suspension for last few days in the Valley.
On January 18, air fare for a single person from Delhi to Srinagar costs around Rs 17000 to 22,000, according to travel portals. Similarly, Jammu to Srinagar air travel costs Rs 26000 to Rs 30000.
A comparison with destinations like Dubai shows that a ticket per person from New Delhi to Dubai costs Rs 14000 on January 19. On subsequent dates Jan 20, 21, prices fall and a ticket costs Rs 95, 00 and 13,000.
For Delhi-Malaysia route, air travel costs Rs 86, 00 to 9000 on the above days.
The exorbitant hikes in airfares occurred due to the suspended air and surface traffic prevalent from many days. On a routine day, air fare to and from Delhi to Srinagar costs between Rs 4000 to 6000.
Further searches on travel portals show that flights from Srinagar to Amritsar, which on a routine day costs less than Rs 5000 have touched Rs 23,000 and 33,000 on January 18.
The hike has caused huge inconvenience to people either making them to pay or deferring their travel plans.
“I am in Delhi since January 13 waiting for price drop but that did not happen. Finally I have booked my flight to Srinagar from Delhi at Rs 22,000. This is really painful,” said Sadia, a Kashmiri resident who was in Delhi
for her office work.
An office bearer of a Travel Agents Association in Kashmir told Kashmir Reader that the airfares go up due to increased demand. But he admitted travel agents sometimes take advantage of the situation.
“An agent sometimes overcharges than an airline. He does it unethically,” he said.
This unethical practice, he said, happens due to advance booking of airfares by agents. He said an agent books many flights of August in January, seven months ahead of the scheduled time.
“This he gets at less rates. When the month of August arrives, an agent takes advantage in case air flights disrupt due to any reasons,” he added.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.