After earlier suspending International commercial flights in the backdrop of coronavirus pandemic till November 30, 2020, the civil aviation ministry on Thursday extended the ceiling on airfares for domestic flights till February 24, 2021.
Here are the rules in place for upper and lower limit cap on airfares brought about amid the coronavirus pandemic:
As the domestic flights services resumed in late May after a halt due to coronavirus led nationwide lockdown, the ministry of civil aviation on May 21 implemented a cap on airfares. And this was effected via seven bands categorized based on the flight duration.
Earlier the schema or upper/lower limit on airfares was announced till August 24 but got extended to November 24. And this cap on airfares shall be in place for another 3 month i.e. till February end.
|Band Categories||Flight Duration||Lower limit||Upper limit|
|Band I||Less than 40 minutes||Rs. 2000||Rs. 6000|
|Band II||40-60 minutes||Rs. 2500||Rs. 7500|
|Band III||60-90 minutes||Rs. 3000||Rs. 9000|
|Band IV||90-120 minutes||Rs. 3500||Rs. 10000|
|Band V||120-150 minutes||Rs. 4500||Rs. 13000|
|Band VI||150-180 minutes||Rs. 5500||Rs. 15700|
|Band VII||180-210 minutes||Rs. 6500||Rs. 18600|
So for the busiest route Delhi-Mumbai, airfare will have a lower and upper limit set at Rs. 3500 and Rs. 10000, respectively. The cap on the lower limit was set to ensure that airlines remain financially viable amid high costs and upper limit was meant to curb unwarranted airfare price hike on account of pent up demand.
Also, airlines need to offer 40% of the total seats in an aircraft at below the mid-point price between the lower and upper cap on airfares.
Hardeep Singh Puri, civil aviation minister, said that if scheduled domestic flights reach pre-Covid levels by the year end, he will remove limits on airfares without any hesitation then.