Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Friday, Jul 26, 2002
Logistics - Airlines
IA apex fare offer finds many takers
NEW DELHI, July 25
INDIAN Airlines (IA) is literally setting the domestic skies on fire with its apex fare scheme, which has seen the airline sell more than 16,000 tickets, during the first two weeks of it being launched.
Official sources told Business Line that the more heartening fact was that there had been a steady increase in bookings since the scheme was launched.
"While we received 862 bookings on an all-India basis during the first day of the scheme, the numbers started to increase by August 6 when the bookings crossed the 1,000- mark. The bookings have peaked at 1,754 for travel on August 14,'' IA officials said.
IA has sold 16,145 tickets under the scheme or close to 55 per cent of the seats on offer during the first two weeks of opening.
Apart from August 14, the airline received huge demand for seats under the apex scheme on August 10 (1,529 seats were sold) and August 11 (1,410 seats were sold).
The sectors, which have been seeing a heavy rush for tickets under the scheme, include Delhi-Kolkata and Delhi-Chennai (both of which have been sold out), Mumbai-Bangalore, Kolkata-Bangalore, Delhi-Hyderabad, Delhi-Bagdogra, Delhi-Jammu and Mumbai-Mangalore.
"The passenger rush on almost all these sectors is in both directions and not for one-way travel alone. Besides, there is heavy passenger demand on the trunk routes and long distance routes such as Chennai-Delhi and Kolkata-Bangalore,'' the officials said.
They said that while it was still early days to talk about revenue implications of the apex fare tickets sold, they pointed to the fact that the revenue generated under the scheme was incremental for IA.
"The people who have booked under the scheme are specific segment of travellers and not the regular travellers who would generally fly. In that sense the scheme seems to be a success,'' they said.
The apex scheme launched by IA allows passengers to travel in economy class at rates, which have been discounted up to 64 per cent. However, to avail of the discount the passenger has to book the tickets 21-days in advance and complete all the travel by October 31 this year.
The scheme, which comes into effect from August 1, has seen IA offering apex fares on 50 of the destinations to which it offers flights.
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