Airfares soar on routes with a strong Go First presence

MUMBAI: Airfares for the next few days on tourist routes to rise sharply Go First presence exploded after bankruptcy announcement, leaving those who had booked airline tickets from Mumbai/Delhi to places like Srinagar, Leh and Phuket until May 5 – the airline suspended all its flights until Friday – staring expensive alternatives. On the other hand, airfares for travel between metros have not been affected so far.
With its relatively cheaper tariffs and good connectivity, Go first it was immensely popular on the Delhi-Leh and Mumbai-Srinagar routes followed by Chennai-Port Blair and Delhi-Srinagar. As a result, fares are now high on these routes.
For Go First and some other airlines as well, the one and a half hour flight from Delhi to Leh and the two and a half hour flight from Mumbai to Srinagar stand out from the rest of the domestic routes for one particular reason. Data from the General Directorate of Civil Aviation shows that in March of this year and May of last year, Go First earned a clear percentage of its revenue from tickets sold in the higher fare range on these two routes. Rates hit the top tier when demand is high, the bottom tiers are gone.
“As the weeks went on, Go First was operating a smaller volume of flights but had a strong presence in Srinagar,” said Ameya Joshi, an aviation analyst. “On Metro routes, it wasn’t particularly loud lately and such airfares they did not increase significantly after the bankruptcy announcement. She is advancing to the top though. But if capacity isn’t restored by mid-May, it could hurt passengers as fares would go up, or it could hurt tourism as passenger volumes could go down,” he added. Currently, Go First has suspended all its flights until 5 May.
Demand for domestic air travel has been high over the past six months and, with their relatively cheaper fares, airlines such as Go First and SpiceJet have been flying in crowds – these are the only two carriers that have consistently recorded a passenger load factor of over 90% between November 2022 and March 2023. Even after the bankruptcy announcement, unsuspecting passengers fell in love with its cheaper fares. Ishaan Ghai tweeted on Wednesday that he booked a “family holiday trip from Delhi to Phuket and back last night through Go First. How can they sell tickets if they are bankrupt and doubt whether to fly. Please stop selling tickets tickets and save unsuspecting customers…” Another user said, “Asking you to help us get compensation for the difference in last minute bookings as our cost has gone up.”


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