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23 April 2024

140 days to summer vacation: Airfares from Dubai to India soar

By Parag Deulgaonkar

Airfares from Dubai to Indian cities – Mumbai and Delhi – have surged for the period of June - the month when Indian schools in the UAE close for summer vacations.

“I am planning to go on holiday to Mumbai in June and so I have been checking prices. Unfortunately, they are quite high despite I trying to book tickets almost five months earlier,” Kavita Shah, a Dubai resident and mother of two kids, told Emirates 24/7.

“I wasn’t expecting high fares this time as I thought prices would come down as oil prices were falling,” she added.

Summer vacations for Indian schools are most likely to commence from June 23.

Those planning to flying to Mumbai on the same day and returning a month later are finding tickets costing as high Dh1,600 per person on Jet Airways, while the lowest price on Emirates comes to Dh1,645 per person.

Those choosing budget carrier, flydubai, will find the cheapest price per person for the same period to be Dh1,221.

In comparison, the lowest ticket price for February, an off-peak season, on Jet is Dh949 per person, while on flydubai it’s Dh939.

Nitin Rajput, another Dubai resident, is also planning to fly to Delhi as soon as schools close.

“We usually paid Dh1,500 a ticket if we booked them two months before, but prices are high this time. I am a bit confused on whether to wait and keep searching for a better offer or simply book it today,” he says.

Emirates, on its website, puts the cheapest fare for Delhi, flying June 23 and returning a month later, at Dh1,735 per person.

No airline from the UAE has still announced any cut in fuel surcharge. In 2015, we reported that Emirates was reviewing fuel surcharge on passenger tickets as it had revised them in 2006 and 2007. Even Qatar Airways was then looking at revising them.

In February 2016, Hong Kong’s Civil Aviation Department scrapped the decade-old fuel surcharge on flights originating from Hong Kong saying, “Falling fuel prices meant it was no longer warranted.”

“Airlines will not be approved to levy passenger fuel surcharges from February 1, 2016, onwards for flights originating from Hong Kong until further notice," the CAD said in a statement.

CNBC reported earlier that Australia-based Qantas removed its fuel surcharge in the first half of 2015 and instead "absorbed" the cost of fuel into its base fare. Virgin Australia also includes fuel costs in its base fare rather than adding a surcharge.

In a report, Malaysia-based Maybank Investment Bank said the price of jet fuel would stay low throughout 2016, and that more airlines would feel the benefit of lower prices as the year went on.

"Many airlines have yet to benefit from the lower fuel prices due to hedges," it said, adding, "But most will come out of it in 2016 on expirations and unwinding, and this will significantly reduce the fuel bill."