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Air travel to cost 2% more to improve regional connectivity

Air Travel
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Travellers can expect a 2% increase in airfare between metros and other big cities next year onwards. The Government has decided to levy 2% more from next year in order to enhance regional connectivity by air. Flight fares to and between small towns will be limited to Rs. 2,500 per hour. The airlines’ cost of operation will be kept low and they will be given the subsidy from the regional connectivity fund (RCF) that comes from the 2% levy.

The Aviation Ministry released a draft aviation policy on Friday that aims to make sure that at least one member from India’s 30-crore middle class families flies once a year. This came as a consequence of PM Narendra Modi’s directive to make flying an affordable mode of travel for common people. The increased 2% cess will make flying between major cities a little more expensive for a majority of travellers.

The regional connectivity scheme (RCS) will take effect from April 1, 2016, the government will notify when the 2% levy will kick in on flight tickets. “The PM asked us to ensure aviation is no longer elitist and in reach of the common man across the country. India has 476 airstrips or airports of which only 75 have regular flights. They can be developed as low cost airport at a cost of Rs 50 crore each. To ensure airlines find it viable to operate small planes (up to 100-seaters) to these hitherto unused places, both the centre and state governments will give tax rebates apart from services at concessional rates,” said aviation secretary R N Choubey, the architect of the draft policy.

The general consensus on the levy is a positive one and key players in the airline industry opine that this decision will definitely improve regional connectivity. What are your thoughts on this increase in airfare?


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Nikita is a total and complete bookworm. She’s also a writer and a dreamer who dreams of travelling far and wide. Her other very important dream is to one day, very soon, write books for children.

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