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Last Updated : Nov 08, 2019 10:32 AM IST | Source: Moneycontrol.com

Poor air in Delhi, runway repair in Mumbai spike up air fares

Extreme pollution after Diwali had led to poor visibility in Delhi, resulting in cancellation of 37 flights, diversion of 35 and delay of 550.

File image
File image

The double whammy of poor air quality in Delhi and closure of one runway in Mumbai has led to spike in air fares, forcing travellers to look for alternative options.

While flights moving out of Delhi have become about 15 percent more expensive, the spike in fare has been steeper in the Mumbai route.

"Due to Mumbai runway maintenance issue, currently there is significant price hike, ranging from 30-80 percent," said Prashant Pitti, Executive Director & CTO, EaseMyTrip.

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Extreme pollution after Diwali had led to poor visibility in Delhi, resulting in cancellation of 37 flights, diversion of 35 and delay of 550.

In Mumbai, the Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport (CSIA) has partially shut its main runway during peak hours for five months, for re-carpeting work. The runway handles about 1,000 flights a day, clocking a little over 45 take-offs and landings an hour.

A Paytm Travel spokesperson said that it has witnessed 20 percent increase in fares for flights to Mumbai. Interestingly, passengers have found ways to reduce the impact on the pocket.

"We have seen increase in air travel booking to Pune in first week of November. Our hypothesis is travellers are taking flight to Pune and travelling to Mumbai by road/train," added the spokesperson.

The repair work started on November 4. "There is a reduction in capacity leading to travelers rescheduling their flights or facing a hike in ticket prices.We would advise individuals to plan their travel accordingly to avoid this last minute hike in airfares," said Sabina Chopra, Co-Founder and COO, Corporate Travel & Head Industry Relations, Yatra.com.

Impact in Delhi

Travel portal EaseMyTrip saw demand for flights landing in north-India drop by 8-9 percent.

"However for flights originating from north-India we observed a slight uptick, as maybe people were trying to escape from the bad air quality," said Pitti.

Paytm Travel spokesperson added that they has been an increase in people travelling from Delhi to nearby hill stations during weekend and "there has been 15% increase in fares for flight moving out of Delhi."

Impact has been felt across the country.

"With the air quality in Delhi deteriorating significantly and health emergency being declared, there is an increase in demand for destinations around Delhi to places like Shimla, Nanital, Jaipur and faraway places like North-East, Kerala, Goa, thereby leading to an increase in airfares across domestic routes," said Chopra.

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First Published on Nov 7, 2019 05:57 pm
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