Get ready to shell out up to 15% more for flying. Airlines are looking at 10-15% hike in airfares due to sharp increase in aviation turbine fuel (ATF) prices every month since August.
The most recent increase came on Sunday when oil marketing companies raised prices by 6%. These hikes come at a time when the rupee is weakening against the US dollar.
After the latest price revision, ATF will now cost Rs 53,045 per kilolitre in Delhi, up Rs 3,025 per kl from Rs 50,020. This is the third consecutive monthly hike. Last month, the price was hiked by 4%.
While no airline came on record, they said the twin impact of costlier ATF and weaker rupee leaves them with few options but to raise fares unless they want to meet a Kingfisherlike fate. “We will take a decision shortly on fares. The operating cost has gone up substantially, and we have to pass on the same to flyers,” said the official of a full service airline.
In addition, from August 1 the government has started levying a regional connectivity cess of Rs 5,000 on each flights. Most airlines have transferred this cost to passengers.
Thanks to low crude prices till recently, airlines were able to offer low fares to passengers which had led to over 20% growth in domestic air traffic for several months in a row till this summer.