IndiGo, GoAir cancel over 120 flights in 48 hours, airfares skyrocket

IndiGo, GoAir cancel over 120 flights in 48 hours, airfares skyrocket
IndiGo and GoAir together have cancelled over 120 domestic flights in last 48 hours (Representational Image, Courtesy: The English Post)

After cancelling 65 flights yesterday, domestic carriers IndiGo and GoAir cancelled another 48 flights on Wednesday as almost one-third of their A320 Neo aircraft fleet remained grounded for the third day following a safety directive by the DGCA.

Of the 48 flights, which are not being operated as part of the curtailed schedule, 42 are of IndiGo and six of GoAir.

IndiGo has cancelled 42 flights for 14 March, which includes flights to Mumbai, Kolkata, Pune, Jaipur, Srinagar, Bhubaneswar, Chennai, Delhi, Dehradun, Amritsar, Bengaluru and Hyderabad, among others, the airline announced on its website.

However, the Wadia Group-promoted GoAir said it had cancelled a total of six flights due to the grounding of three of its A320 Neo planes, as against 18 on Tuesday.

The Gurugram-headquartered IndiGo operates over 1,000 daily flights and carries about 40 percent of domestic flyers, while GoAir offers 230 services daily and has a market share of around 10 percent.

On Tuesday, the two airlines together had cancelled over 65 flights, with IndiGo alone cancelling over 47 services, due to the grounding of their 11 aircraft—eight of IndiGo and three of GoAir—by the DGCA on 13 March.

The aircrafts were grounded due to safety concerns arising out of the mid-air shut down of the Pratt & Whitney manufactured Neo engines of these aeroplanes.

There are a total of 45 A320 Neo planes fitted with P&W engines with the two airlines. Of these, IndiGo has 33 and GoAir 12 planes.

The cancellation of services in a large number has put thousands of passengers at inconvenience as they had pre-booked these flights amid the concerns of exorbitant fares which are charged by the carriers for last-minute travel.

While the highest one-way fare on Mumbai-Delhi route was Rs 14,245 and lowest was Rs 5,032 on Tuesday, the highest and lowest fares for the same trip would be Rs 28,911 and Rs 9,112 resepctively on March 14, popular travel booking website Yatra said.

“The DGCA decision to ground 14 A320 Neo aircraft of IndiGo and GoAir and the consequent cancellation of flights has resulted in a fairly significant impact on airfares for immediate travel on some key routes. We have seen fares of over Rs 12,000 for a one-way Delhi-Mumbai flight for today. With current load factors at over 90 percent, this reduction in capacity is likely to have a 5-10 percent impact on fares on key routes in the short to medium term,” Sharat Dhall, COO(B2C), Yatra told the Indian Express.

Meanwhile, the two carriers had on Tuesday said they were taking measures to minimise inconvenience to the passengers whose flights have been cancelled by booking them on alternative flights as well giving them the option of cancelling or rescheduling their travel without any extra cost.

With agency inputs

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