|Yet to take off
Patna, Dec. 10: Fliers in Patna are still in the dark about the new route-wise airfares to various destinations from the capital.
More than 48 hours after the deadline set by Union civil aviation minister Praful Patel for the publication of the airfares on various routes, no such announcement has come from the airlines.
Sources said there had been no major changes in the airfare of the various airlines.
“The average Patna-Delhi airfare was between Rs 4,000 to Rs 6,000 for economy class and more than Rs 17,000 for business class, for advance booking made a fortnight before the journey. There has been no major change in the rates today on the websites of the various airlines,” said Rakesh Kumar, owner of a travel agency in the capital.
Operators of the airlines confirmed Kumar’s statement. They said they had received no instruction from their head offices about any changes in the fare.
“If someone books a ticket for Delhi 15 days in advance, the price of the ticket remains around Rs 2,200 whereas in case someone is booking a ticket on the day of journey the rate varies between Rs 4,000 and Rs 13,000. The rates are the same today,” said a source in the Jet Airways.
An Air India official said there had been no changes in the airfares in their company either. The rate of the economy class ticket of the airline varies between Rs 3,630 and Rs 14,330 said the source. “In business class the tickets are priced at Rs 17,875 and we are sticking to it,” he added.
A source said the airfare on the Patna-Mumbai route has remained fixed between Rs 6,000 and Rs 9,000. The price goes up if the ticket in booked at the last minute, said another travel agent.
“I purchased a Jet Airways ticket on December 9 for Mumbai. I am flying out on December 13. I was charged Rs 15,600 for the ticket,” said Sachin Chandra, who is a gold member of Jet Priviledge, a facility given to frequent fliers.
“The situation was not the same earlier. Three months back a ticket for Mumbai used to come for Rs 9,000,” added Chandra.
Narendra Kumar, who is a platinum member of Jet Privilege, said: “None of the airlines operating here are providing rate cards. Earlier the fares of different airlines used to vary. But the situation has changed in past few months and most of them have the same prices. Passengers do not have too many options.”
The situation has not changed for destinations like Calcutta, which is just an hour away from Patna.
Only one ticket was available today for the Kingfisher Patna-Calcutta flight on Saturday. “The price of the sole ticket is Rs 7,682,” said a source in Kingfisher airlines. “Earlier we used to charge Rs 9,000 for the last few tickets. But the situation has changed now.”
The official added that no rate card was available and prices of the tickets were being charged in accordance with the information available on the website. He said the price of the ticket of its Patna-Mumbai flight too had come down and its upper limit was Rs 16,900 compared to the past upper limit of Rs 17,600.