Kashmir airfares sky-high after Go First’s insolvency

Representative Image
Representative ImageSpecial arrangement

Srinagar, May 6: Amid good tourist influx, the price of travel to Kashmir has risen as a result of Go First’s suspension of flights, much to the dismay of prospective tourists.

Given Go First’s request to file for bankruptcy in the NCLT, experts and industry insiders anticipate that this increase in airfares will last for a long length of time.

The fact that airfares have nearly quadrupled has a severe effect on the tourist and aviation industries in Kashmir. The current airfare from Srinagar to Delhi ranges from Rs. 15000 to Rs. 20000 when it was previously in the Rs. 8000 range. The current airfare from Srinagar to Mumbai ranges from Rs. 17000 to Rs. 23000, which was half the previous price.

According to the airline’s official website, Go First had a fleet of 53 aircraft that visited 34 locations and flew more than 200 flights each day on average. A dramatic increase in airline costs has been seen on all of Go First’s routes as a result of the suspension of the 200 or so daily flights for ten days.

According to data from May 5, the cost of travelling between Delhi and Leh increased to Rs 26,819 from Rs 4,772 regularly. Similarly to this, passengers on the Chandigarh-Srinagar route reported that their charge increased to Rs 24,418 from the regular price of Rs 4,047.

Additionally, the Srinagar-Chandigarh route’s ticket prices increased on May 6 from Rs 4,745 to Rs 26,148.

The obvious rise in demand is what is causing this sudden spike in airfares, which is not entirely man-made and is being caused just by the airlines. The supply side has also been constrained, according to data, as a result of greater flight occupancies.

Kashmir Chamber of Commerce & Industry in a statement said the suspension of flights by Go First Airlines and its decision to file for bankruptcy is worrisome.

“This act by the airlines has caused distress to the passengers in general and tourists in particular who are on a visit to Kashmir or are scheduled to travel to Jammu and Kashmir in the coming days by the Airlines,” a spokesperson of KCCI said.

“KCCI, in particular, is anguished about the inward/outward journey of thousands of passengers who have been left in the lurch even without having the slightest clue about the fate of the flights they were booked for travel.

“A large number of tourism stakeholders, students, NRKs/ patients/ business travellers have approached KCCI for taking up the matter with the Government, DGCA etc to help them out of the over the situation.”

“Many of them face the risk of losing their jobs and the patients at risk of life. The KCCI believes that the grounding of the entire fleet by Go First could not have been an abrupt decision but a planned one given the growing list of creditors and its failure in acquiring aircraft engines and other spare parts from manufacturers abroad. Accordingly, the Airlines should have acted responsibly by not taking bookings.”

“There has to be accountability for the passengers who are forced to overstay and pay exorbitant fares to reach their destinations. Moreover, as a consequence, many have missed their connecting flights for International travel.”

KCCI impresses upon the authorities to ensure the operation of more flights by other airlines to make good the loss of about 12 flights of the Srinagar/Jammu sector. “The tourism sector in Kashmir has been largely affected by the cancellation of flights by Go First facing an uncertain future and its booked passengers a stressful present.”

Related Stories

No stories found.
Greater Kashmir