DUBAI: Passengers flying from UAE to India who had postponed their travel plans due to high ticket prices can now breathe a sigh of relief.
After three months of high fares, booking aggregators and travel agencies have confirmed that round-trip airfares from the UAE to India will drop from a summer high of Dh1,800 to Dh2,600, a drop of between 15% and 30%.
Fares are expected to drop after September 14 and remain in the range of AED794 to AED952 until November 1. Fares for flights to major cities in India will remain unchanged. After that, fares are expected to remain high until the second week of January 2024, which coincides with the festive season and New Year’s rush, the travel agency said. Additionally, Dubai’s flag carrier Emirates will launch premium economy flights in Mumbai and Bengaluru from October 29, just in time for the start of the peak winter season.
Basheer Mohammed, managing director of Europe Travel and Tours, said: “Fares on the India-UAE route are finally stabilizing after an expensive summer, especially for average middle-class families.” “Currently, fares to Mumbai and Delhi range from Dh900 to Dh1,200. Fares to South Indian destinations are also in the same price range,” he added.
Airfare prices bring sweet breaks
Many Indian expatriates returning to the UAE after their summer holidays have had to postpone their travel plans as fares have risen by more than 200% compared to the off-season.
However, fares for round-trip travel have now dropped significantly. For example, an economy class ticket from Dubai to Mumbai between 4-9 September was originally priced at Dh890-1,200, but this has been reduced to Dh845-928 for the period 14-21 September. Similarly, the Delhi-Dubai flight cost AED 1,073 for travel in late August to early September, but now averages AED 908 later in the month.
In the extremely busy South Indian region, especially Kerala, fares had soared to Dh1,288 to Dh2,277 at the end of August. However, off-peak fares for September and October are currently averaging between AED600 and AED1,000 per passenger. Tickets from Dubai to Cochin cost AED 922 (Dh 1,427 round trip) and Dubai to Chennai from AED 914 (maximum AED 1,718 during peak summer). “
Increase in inbound tourism
Atish Thapa, Head of Middle East Business and Marketing at Cleartrip.com, said the share of UAE inbound tourists has increased significantly from 28% to 39%, indicating strong interest from international tourists in exploring the UAE’s tourism offering.
Thapa said the stay trends indicated that Indian tourists were staying longer in the country. “About 24% of tourists stay for four weeks, while only 23% choose to stay for one week,” he explained. About 15% stay for five weeks. “This reflects a healthy mix of short-term tourists looking for short breaks and longer-term tourists, including visiting family and friends,” Thapa added.
upcoming busy season
Sachin Gadoya, CEO and co-founder of musafir.com and Musafir Business, said that as the fourth quarter approaches, the tourism landscape in the UAE will change dramatically. “A combination of factors, including pleasant weather and a busy events calendar, is expected to lead to a surge in inbound tourism,” especially from India, which remains the main source of inbound tourists to the UAE, Ghadoya said. market.
From January to June this year, Dubai welcomed 1,223,000 tourists, up 43 percent from the same period last year, according to the Dubai Economy and Tourism Department. Gadoya said that with major events such as the Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and COP28, the sector will see a significant increase in inbound tourism. “We also predict that some travelers will combine business and leisure activities,” he added.
Salam Air launches Fujairah-Kozhikode flight
The evening flight departs Fujairah at 7.50pm and arrives in Kozhikode at 3.20am with a total flight time of 6 hours including a stopover in Muscat. Another daytime flight departs Fujairah at 10.20am and will stop in Muscat for 11 hours and 10 minutes. Passengers on the flight can choose to spend a day in Muscat by applying for an e-visa online, the airline said. The flight departed from Kozhikode at 4.20 am and arrived in Fujairah at 9.50 am with a 2 hour 45 minute transit in Muscat. The fare for this segment is AED 554.
The second flight departed Kozhikode at 4.20 am and arrived in Fujairah at 7.20 pm with a total flight time of 16 hours and 30 minutes. This tour includes a stopover in Muscat for 12 hours and 15 minutes.