Mubashir Aalam Wani
Srinagar, Jan 5: The prolonged dry and favourable weather has proved a boon for tourism as the airfare from various destinations to Srinagar has been regulated this season.
Kashmir for the past many years has been witnessing an undue hike in airfare during the December to February period as adverse weather conditions often led to the cancellation of flights.
During December last year and January so far, the airfare has been quite nominal to Kashmir, which has subsequently helped the valley to retain the flow of tourists.
A cursory look at the airfare chart reveals that a one-way flight ticket from New Delhi to Srinagar costs Rs 5000 per passenger for the current week.
A return ticket too costs Rs 5000-6000 per passenger, which the tourist players said is justified.
Similarly, airfare from other destinations has been also regulated this winter so far.
For instance, a one-way ticket from Mumbai to Srinagar costs Rs 8000 onwards. The return ticket to Mumbai from Srinagar also sells at the same rate.
Tourism players said the prolonged dry and favourable weather this winter so far has led to the regulation of airfare.
“The hike in airfare would mostly happen during January when the entire valley would be draped in snow. Since it is sunny daytime during the ongoing month, the flights don’t get cancelled. Though last month some flights got delayed due to the fog,” said Umar Ahmad, a travel agent.
He said the travel agents have been also appealing to the government to keep a check on airfare hikes during the last few years.
“The government was also concerned with it as travel agents held scores of meetings with the concerned department regarding hike in airfare. The airfare hike would often compel tourists to choose other destinations over Kashmir,” Umar added.
Director Srinagar airport, Javed Anjum they are hopeful of no flight cancellations this year.
“During the winter of 2023, we didn’t witness any flight cancellation. We have already CAT I ILS in place. Efforts are being done to further enhance the infrastructure so that no flight get cancelled at the airport,” he said.