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What to know about flights while Indian travellers are packing their bags to spend summer holidays

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For the first time in two years, Indian travelers are free to make summer plans without having to account for Covid-related travel restrictions. And with international flights resuming their regular schedule, foreign destinations have topped wishlists.

According to Dutch online travel agency Booking.com’s Travel Predictions 2022, 65% of Indian travellers have indicated that they don’t care where they go on vacation as long as it’s the type of trip they desire. According to data from the company, Indian tourists are flocking to beach resorts and hill areas to escape the summer heat.

A survey conducted by ZestMoney, an EMI finance and buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) network, 70% of Indians want to travel during the summer, reflecting pent-up demand after two years of the pandemic.

As per a customer survey conducted to better understand travel plans and vacation preferences of Indians, 60% of the respondents said they would travel domestically, while nearly 40% said they would travel internationally in the next three months now that pandemic restrictions have been lifted. Around 2,000 people from across India responded to the study, the majority of whom were millennials and Gen Z.

Air Travel

The rise in airfares, however, has dented vacation spirit to an extent, following steep increase in the price of aviation turbine fuel (ATF) and an increase in user development fees (UDF) — a component of the airfare and aeronautical fees that airlines pay to airports.

Domestic air passenger traffic fell 4.58% from 2,317,915 in the week ending March 1 to 2,211,838 in the week ending April 7, indicating that high prices, among other factors, may have influenced demand, according to aviation analysis website NetworkThoughts.

However, domestic air passenger traffic is expected to be around 84 million in FY22, up about 59% the previous year but down 40% from pre-Covid levels, according to a report released by rating agency Icra Ltd.

On the other hand, according to a report by rating agency Crisil Ltd, Indian airlines may post a record loss of more than Rs 20,000 crore in FY22, which is 44% higher than the loss reported the previous year. Domestic air traffic is expected to return to pre-pandemic levels by the fourth quarter of 2022-23.

But in May, it was reported that many airlines are charging domestic passengers a fee to check-in at airport counters, something that’s making travel enthusiasts dispirited.

After domestic flights resumed operations partially in May 2020, the government imposed certain conditions, such as requiring passengers to check-in online. Since then, many airlines have begun charging domestic passengers a fee to check-in at airport counters.

A passenger recently complained on Twitter about airlines charging a fee for check-in, comparing it to a restaurant charging a customer extra for serving meals on a plate. Another user tagged Union Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia, calling the practice “ridiculous”.

To that tweet, the minister responded by saying, “Agreed, will examine this asap.”

Given that the cess is a commercial choice made by struggling Indian airlines, it remains to be seen how the government will persuade them to reconsider, especially at a time when airline operating costs are at an all-time high due to record-high rates for aviation turbine fuel (ATF) and a record-low rupee.

The high base price of ATF combined with even higher VAT and excise tax rates has made jet fuel for domestic flights in India among the costliest in the world. Delhi and Maharashtra, that have India’s largest aviation hubs, are yet to reduce VAT on ATF. The Centre has also refused to lower excise on jet fuel, despite airlines’ demands.

Domestic fare bands, which are determined by the aviation ministry and apply to tickets sold for flights departing within 15 days of purchasing, have not been updated upwards in many months, despite the continuous rise in jet fuel prices.

Flight Bookings

Since costlier flight tickets could disappoint Indian travellers, there are some money-saving tips that can help.

– After finalising travel dates and destinations, book flight tickets at the earliest instead of waiting to avoid higher fares

– According to frequent travellers, booking flight tickets at midnight from from Monday to Wednesday may get you lower fares

– Compare flight fares given on different websites

– When visiting airline websites, setting up price notifications could be helpful

Read all the Latest News , Breaking News and IPL 2022 Live Updates here.


For the first time in two years, Indian travelers are free to make summer plans without having to account for Covid-related travel restrictions. And with international flights resuming their regular schedule, foreign destinations have topped wishlists.

According to Dutch online travel agency Booking.com’s Travel Predictions 2022, 65% of Indian travellers have indicated that they don’t care where they go on vacation as long as it’s the type of trip they desire. According to data from the company, Indian tourists are flocking to beach resorts and hill areas to escape the summer heat.

A survey conducted by ZestMoney, an EMI finance and buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) network, 70% of Indians want to travel during the summer, reflecting pent-up demand after two years of the pandemic.

As per a customer survey conducted to better understand travel plans and vacation preferences of Indians, 60% of the respondents said they would travel domestically, while nearly 40% said they would travel internationally in the next three months now that pandemic restrictions have been lifted. Around 2,000 people from across India responded to the study, the majority of whom were millennials and Gen Z.

Air Travel

The rise in airfares, however, has dented vacation spirit to an extent, following steep increase in the price of aviation turbine fuel (ATF) and an increase in user development fees (UDF) — a component of the airfare and aeronautical fees that airlines pay to airports.

Domestic air passenger traffic fell 4.58% from 2,317,915 in the week ending March 1 to 2,211,838 in the week ending April 7, indicating that high prices, among other factors, may have influenced demand, according to aviation analysis website NetworkThoughts.

However, domestic air passenger traffic is expected to be around 84 million in FY22, up about 59% the previous year but down 40% from pre-Covid levels, according to a report released by rating agency Icra Ltd.

On the other hand, according to a report by rating agency Crisil Ltd, Indian airlines may post a record loss of more than Rs 20,000 crore in FY22, which is 44% higher than the loss reported the previous year. Domestic air traffic is expected to return to pre-pandemic levels by the fourth quarter of 2022-23.

But in May, it was reported that many airlines are charging domestic passengers a fee to check-in at airport counters, something that’s making travel enthusiasts dispirited.

After domestic flights resumed operations partially in May 2020, the government imposed certain conditions, such as requiring passengers to check-in online. Since then, many airlines have begun charging domestic passengers a fee to check-in at airport counters.

A passenger recently complained on Twitter about airlines charging a fee for check-in, comparing it to a restaurant charging a customer extra for serving meals on a plate. Another user tagged Union Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia, calling the practice “ridiculous”.

To that tweet, the minister responded by saying, “Agreed, will examine this asap.”

Given that the cess is a commercial choice made by struggling Indian airlines, it remains to be seen how the government will persuade them to reconsider, especially at a time when airline operating costs are at an all-time high due to record-high rates for aviation turbine fuel (ATF) and a record-low rupee.

The high base price of ATF combined with even higher VAT and excise tax rates has made jet fuel for domestic flights in India among the costliest in the world. Delhi and Maharashtra, that have India’s largest aviation hubs, are yet to reduce VAT on ATF. The Centre has also refused to lower excise on jet fuel, despite airlines’ demands.

Domestic fare bands, which are determined by the aviation ministry and apply to tickets sold for flights departing within 15 days of purchasing, have not been updated upwards in many months, despite the continuous rise in jet fuel prices.

Flight Bookings

Since costlier flight tickets could disappoint Indian travellers, there are some money-saving tips that can help.

– After finalising travel dates and destinations, book flight tickets at the earliest instead of waiting to avoid higher fares

– According to frequent travellers, booking flight tickets at midnight from from Monday to Wednesday may get you lower fares

– Compare flight fares given on different websites

– When visiting airline websites, setting up price notifications could be helpful

Read all the Latest News , Breaking News and IPL 2022 Live Updates here.

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