Air Travel To Become Costly As Airlines Increase Aviation Security Fee

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Mehab Qureshi

New Delhi, August 20, 2020: Air travel will now be slightly costlier from next month as directed by the Union Ministry of Civil Aviation today. These charges will apply to both domestic and international travel.

Meanwhile, the aviation industry continues to be the worst affected during the ongoing Coronavirus (COVID) pandemic. Airlines will now increase the aviation security fee (ASF) to Rs 160, which was previously Rs 150 starting from September 1, and the international fee will be hiked up to $5.2 instead of $4.85.

This ASF is collected by the passengers at the time of booking and is given to the government. ASF is used to fund the security arrangement at the airport. However, this is not the first year that the fee was increased. Last year, the ministry had declared that domestic passengers would be charged Rs 150 instead of Rs 130 and international passengers would have to pay 4.85 USD instead of USD 3.25 as the ASF from July 1, 2019.

Although the domestic flights have resumed in the country, the average occupancy rate has been approximately 50-60 per cent.

Besides, international passenger flights continue to remain suspended from march 23 barring special repatriation flights to the USA, the UK, France, Germany, the UAE, Qatar and Maldives under the Vande Bharat Mission.