Airlines hiked excess baggage charge for domestic flyers. IndiGo, SpiceJet, GoAir hike excess baggage charges for domestic flyers. Air India is now the only airline on which domestic economy flyers can take up to 25 kg of check-in baggage free of charge.
Airlines hiked excess baggage charge for domestic flyers
Airlines hiked excess baggage charge for domestic flyers. Now its become expensive for passengers Carrying over 15 kg check-in baggage on domestic flights.
Private airlines have started raising both pre-booking charges for excess baggage as well as the fees that need to be paid at airports by those who have not pre-booked the same. Air India is now the only airline on which domestic economy flyers can take up to 25 kg of check-in baggage free of charge.
Low-cost carriers (LCC)Indigo, SpiceJet and Go Air are now charging Rs 400 per kg for each kilo beyond the allowed 15 kg from domestic passengers at airports who have not pre-booked excess baggage.
Air India, which allows passengers to carry up to 25 kg baggage free, had earlier this month raised excess baggage charges from Rs 400 per kg to Rs 500.
What was the earlier pre-booking excess baggage charges?
Last August, the LCC had set its pre-booking charges for 5, 10, 15 and 30 kg (beyond the free 15 kg) at Rs 1,425; Rs 2,850; Rs 4,275 and Rs 8,550, respectively. And flyers who did not pre-book were required to pay Rs 300 per kg for each kilo beyond the allowed 15 kg. All these charges have now been hiked by 33%.
Till last August, airlines could charge only Rs 500 for the first 5 kg beyond the 15-kg limit for domestic flyers due to a DGCA order. Beyond 20 kg, they could charge any amount. Airlines challenged that DGCA order in courts and were allowed to set excess baggage charges beyond 15 kg itself.
What is the new pre-booking excess baggage charges?
Airlines hiked excess baggage charge for domestic flyers – IndiGo and SpiceJet revised their excess bag charge from Friday (June 22), while GoAir hiked from (June 23) and Jet from July 15.
# IndiGo hiked pre-booked excess baggage charges on its domestic flights by one-third or 33% from Friday. IndiGo’s charges for pre-booking 5, 10, 15 and 30 kg (beyond the free 15 kg) on its domestic routes will now be Rs 1,900; Rs 3,800; Rs 5,700 and Rs 11,400, respectively.
# SpiceJet pre-booking charges for 5, 10, 15, 20 and 30 kg for domestic flyers are Rs 1,600; Rs 3,200; Rs 4,800; Rs 6,400 and Rs 9,600, respectively. Its passengers who do not pre-book will need to pay Rs 400 per kg extra for each kilo of check-in.
# GoAir excess baggage charges are exactly similar to IndiGo’s, the only difference is that they are charged on pre-purchase in the same increments of 5 kg, 10 kg, 15 kg & 30 kg.
# Meanwhile, Jet Airways has hiked excess baggage cost from Rs 400 to Rs 500 per kg. The airline has also introduced a new baggage concept under which they allowed 15 kg will need to be taken in one bag by domestic economy flyers. For a second bag (weighing up to 15 kg) on flights within India, Jet will charge Rs 3,999. This rule will come into effect from July 15.
Why Airlines suddenly hiked the baggage charge?
The reason behind the hike in excess baggage charges as per the Airline officials are,
# As per the Airline executives statement “Airlines need to earn revenue from ancillary sources when fares are not increasing, as this will somewhat mitigate the losses and allow airlines to offer attractive base fares to flyers”. Means it is an alternative means of earning some revenue, after the failure to raise ticket prices despite the increase in operating cost due to surging fuel prices.
# Additional revenue refers to the earning from non-ticketing resources and for low-cost airlines, these include excess luggage fees, the onboard sale of food and beverages, cancellation fees etc. For IndiGo, this revenue stream rose 13 per cent in FY17.
# Jet fuel prices have risen 40% from January 2017 till last month and this is forcing airlines to hike fares and other charges to cover costs.
# This is the second hike by IndiGo in recent days. The airline had reintroduced fuel surcharge for domestic flights from May 30, due to rising aircraft fuel cost and depreciating Indian rupee. As this surcharge, it had decided to impose Rs 200 on routes less than 1000 km, and Rs 400 on routes longer than 1000 km distance.
# Officials suggests that increasing fees for baggage is also an airline’s way of discouraging passengers from carrying more weight, as a lighter load would mean less fuel burn for planes.