Air fares up 65% on holiday season demand

Mumbai, Dec 27: Last-minute domestic flight ticket prices are up 65% on a year-on-year basis on the back of strong travel demand in the Christmas-New Year week, according to online travel portals. The spike in last-minute airfares is in contrast to 2015, when fares registered a decline. Last-minute airfares in December 2015 were 35-40% lower than the same month in 2014.

In fact, average fares throughout 2015 were the cheapest in three years owing to a combination of low crude oil price and capacity addition.According to Sharat Dhall, chief operating officer (B2C) at Yatra.com, on an average, there is a 15-20% increase in last-minute fares in December. On certain routes, the increase is as high as 65%.

“These fares are as a result of increased passenger loads in the peak holiday season. Demonetisation impacted the sales initially but since then, things are back to normal. We’ve seen a growth in last-minute bookings, which is driving up fares,’ said Dhall.

A one-way Mumbai-Delhi ticket booked on Monday for immediate travel was available of Rs 6,621 ‘” a rise of 66.4% over the previous year. Last-minute fares on other metro routes booked on Monday were 13-23% higher on a y-o-y basis than 2015, according to data provided by Yatra.com.

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