BENGALURU: IT’S that time of the year again. Airlines are offering special discounts to customers in a bid to increase their sales around the new year. Malaysia-based airlines Air Asia might just have outdone all its competitors this year by offering flights cheaper than cab fares. The company has offered domestic flights at a base fare of `99 and international at `444. In a release, Air Asia said the tickets under this offer can be booked until November 19, 2017, for travel between May 7, 2018 and January 31, 2019.
The offer is being given on domestic destinations connected by Air Asia India (flight code i5), including Bengaluru, Kochi, Hyderabad, Ranchi, Bhubaneswar, Kolkata, New Delhi, Goa among other s. Discount for international travel has been offered on travel to Kuala Lumpur from Tiruchirappalli, Kochi, Bhubaneswar, Delhi, Jaipur and to Bali from Mumbai and Kolkata, to Bangkok from Jaipur, Kolkata, Kochi, Chennai and Bengaluru connected by AirAsia Berhad (Flight code AK), AirAsia X Berhad (Flight code D7), Indonesia AirAsia X (Flight code XT), Indonesia AirAsia (Flight code QZ) and Thai AirAsia (Flight code FD). Recently, Jet Airways too announced up to 30% discount on travel from India to high-demand destinations served by the airline’s international network, for bookings between Nov 8, 2017 and Nov 14, 2017. The offer was for travel between January 1 and January 22, 2018 on both premier and economy classes. Operating flights in an environment of stiff competition, airlines are resorting to offering heavy discounts during festival seasons in order to attract customers.
While some are offering New Year discount fares, several cut prices around Diwali earlier this year. Airline companies are walking the tightrope in sustaining airfares even as operating costs are escalating. According to the 2018 Global Travel Forecast brought out by Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) in partnership with Carlson Wagonlit Travel (CWT), Asia Pacific expects to see a 2.8% rise in 2018 pricing with domestic demand increasing, particularly in China and India. On the other hand, the number of passengers taking flights within India is also witnessing a steady growth. According to Directorate General of Civil Aviation, domestic passenger traffic in India has witnessed growth at a rate of 22%, in comparison to 21.24%in FY16.