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Kingfisher crisis to have minimal impact on air fares: Travel portals

Nivedita Ganguly Mumbai | Updated on November 17, 2017 Published on October 06, 2012

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Even as the cash-strapped Kingfisher Airlines shut all its operations from October 1 due to the employees’ strike, it has failed to make an impact on air fares.

Aviation industry experts and travel agents told Business Line that this is because Kingfisher has a market share of just three per cent, and hence, there is unlikely to be any significant movement in air fares in the near future.

“The airline’s load factor had been less than 30 per cent in the past three-four months. In fact, even in the busy sectors of Bangalore-Delhi and Mumbai-Delhi where KFA had some presence, there have been no visible hikes in air fares,” said Sanjay Bhasin, Managing Director, Goibibo, an online travel portal.

Kingfisher’s position amongst top Indian airlines slipped from the second position to the last within less than a year. The airline has been facing a severe financial crisis with banks together having an exposure of nearly Rs 7,000 crore in the airline.

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation on Friday served a show-cause notice to the airlines, which could ultimately lead to Kingfisher losing its licence to fly. The debt-ridden airline has not been able to adhere to its approved schedule for the last 10 months, leading up to a partial lockout this week.

Though several doubts were raised about the airline limping back and flying anew, online travel portals say that there is enough inventory still available.

According to Manmeet Ahluwalia, Head of Marketing, Expedia, “The impact of Kingfisher’s absence has been minimal, as the load factor with other airlines is around 70 per cent.”

Travel industry players expect fares to increase by not more than 10 per cent for immediate travel on high traffic routes such as Mumbai-Delhi and Bangalore-Delhi.

> nivedita.ganguly@thehindu.co.in

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Published on October 06, 2012
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