Airfares on India and Pakistan routes dropped in January and February and are expected to remain at the current levels over the next two months, according to travel industry executives in Dubai.
The new Covid-19 regulations enforced by India such as mandatory tests for children all ages flying to the country are making families reluctant to go back home, putting airfares under pressure over the next few months, they said.
So, UAE-based families from India and Pakistan are likely to combine their summer travel with Eid Al Fitr holidays, which fall in May and barely a couple of weeks prior to summer holidays that start from June.
Shaik Shibli, head of marketing, ITL World, said the availability of flight tickets from India and Pakistan to the UAE would remain static during the mid-year holiday season.
“During the end of December and the first two weeks of January, there was a marginal spike in airfares, but rates have come down since then. We’ve seen a lot of promotions, indicating a dip in airfares,” said Shibli.
He cited Indian families have become more conscious following the introduction of new Covid-19 rules that made it mandatory for families to take PCR tests for children as well.
Muhammad Jaffar, business development manager, Al Awal Tourism, said airfares to India and Pakistan were on the lower side and some carriers were selling one-way tickets to India for as low as Dh280.
On Pakistani routes, the rates have been stable due to less supply and one-way ticket prices are up to Dh600.
Emirates airline’s website showed a Dubai-Mumbai one-way economy class ticket for Dh650 on Tuesday (March 2) and a similar fare on May 13. While one-way airfare on the Dubai-Lahore route costs Dh580 for the economy class on similar dates.
“Airfares to Pakistan will also remain the same level because they’re already at their highest,” he added.
Jaffar said airfares to India would also stay at their current levels during the Holy month of Ramadan and Eid al-Fitr because of the new Covid-19 restrictions on these routes.
Shibli said normally there is a spike in airfares during Eid al-Fitr, but this time the ticket prices would hold the line.
“There are more reasons for people to travel from the UAE during Eid and as a result, there may be a marginal uptick in fares. Schools are closed from June for summer holidays. So, people may consider flying a bit early to India and Pakistan, if they feel safer to do so,” he added.
“Airfares will be more or less stable, or may report a marginal rise during Eid Al Fitr,” he added.
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