News around you

Air fares could see a surge due to Vistara cancellations

Vistara says it has deployed larger aircraft like its B787-9 Dreamliner TM and A321 Neo on select domestic routes to accommodate more customers, wherever possible.

vistara 1BENGALURU: With Vistara officially announcing the cancellation of multiple flights this week and the huge delays experienced by flyers on the flights that are operational too, passengers are either voluntarily cancelling their tickets booked with the airline or are forced to book on other airlines at the last minute after the cancellation is announced.

Air travel has become an expensive proposition now, according to flyers who shared their agony on social media.

Among the routes where Vistara flights were cancelled are Bengaluru-Udaipur, Mumbai-Kochi, Delhi-Srinagar, and Delhi-Indore. This gets changed daily as the airline puts out regular updates on cancellations.

Ashwin Siddaramaiah, a hospital safety consultant based in Bengaluru, posted this: “I spent Rs 16,000 to book a flight from Delhi to Bangalore because Vistara cancelled the flight I had booked for 7500. Hope @Tatacompanies are happy.”

A Delhi-based flyer who calls himself Post Master on X posed this query to Vistara: Are you guys refunding money for those you have cancelled flight? And when?”

Another flyer, Ankur Deshmukh, shared the harrowing experience he and his friends underwent on the Vistara UK-864 flight from Bengaluru to Mumbai on Apil 1 after the unannounced delay and subsequent cancellation post midnight. He mentioned the financial strain on them as they were compelled to book an alternative flight with IndiGo.

These are samples of many sharing their ire on X.

Ajay Prakash, Board Member of the Federation of Associations in Indian Tourism and Hospitality, told TNIE, “There has been an immediate impact on consumer behaviour—passengers are avoiding Vistara for now and looking for alternatives. It’s too early to gauge the effect on fares, but any curtailment of capacity is bound to impact fares, which are already rather high. If the issue is not resolved urgently, it does not bode well for the upcoming summer holidays, and we might see a shift back to family travel by road to nearer destinations.”

Rajiv Mehra, president, Indian Association of Tour Operators, said, “The cancellation has led to disruption and the travellers do get hassled but as far as the impact on airfares is concerned, that is too early to say. The impact would only be known after a fortnight. Advance booking with Vistara has been impacted as people are booking with other airlines.”

The schedule of routes and cancellations is announced on a daily basis, so people would do well to check the website of Vistara, he added.

Sandeep Arora, Director, Brightsun Travel, said, “It affected a few domestic Vistara travellers. However, the airline is handling it effectively by offering free cancellations and free date changes on the impacted flights. It affected domestic travel only, particularly on routes such as Delhi-Indore, Delhi-Srinagar, Mumbai-Kochi, and Bengaluru-Udaipur.”

Aviation expert Capt Mohan Ranganathan says, “When the flight gets cancelled, it is the responsibility of the airline to make alternate booking arrangements for the passenger and bear any additional cost. Instead, passengers are getting bulldozed here,“ he added.

Vistara did not respond to specific queries on cancelled tickets.

In a statement, it said the airline was tackling the issue on a war footing and has deployed larger aircraft like its B787-9 Dreamliner TM and A321 Neo on select domestic routes to accommodate more customers, wherever possible.

“We are reaching out to all customers affected by the delays and cancellations over the last weekend to offer relevant refunds and compensation. The situation has already improved, with our on-time performance increasing to over 80% for the last two days. We hope to stabilise our operations for the rest of April 2024 by this weekend,” the statement read further.

You might also like

Comments are closed.