With Indian carriers suddenly deciding to do away with the lowest airfares under the advance purchase schemes,the Government,on Wednesday,came out strongly against any move towards cartelisation among them.
“Our Ministry is against any cartelisation among airlines. We will keep a watch and take strict action in any such case,” Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel said here.
His comments came as leading airlines decided to stop promotional fares to arrest losses,though flag carrier Air India said its fares will be ten per cent lower than those of Jet Airways and Kingfisher’s cheapest rates.
Patel said Air India will “never be a part of such cartelisation and will ensure that competitive pricing ensures better prices to passengers”.
Though major airlines decided to stop the low-fare advance purchase (APEX) schemes,an Air India spokesperson said the airline’s passengers,while enjoying fares cheaper than those of the private players,would get another ten per cent discount if they bought tickets through the website.
Private carriers said they followed dynamic pricing and adjusted fares on a regular basis depending on market conditions and revenue management practices.
Aviation industry sources said most of the Indian carriers opposed under-cutting each other by substantially lowering the base fares.