BENGALURU: Flying between Bengaluru and Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala in the next few days will be expensive as the fares have gone up after at were suspended till Saturday in the wake of floods.
The economy class tickets on direct flights between Bengaluru and Thiruvananthapuram for Thursday and Friday have been sold out. The economy fares for two stop flights from Bengaluru were between Rs 16,000 and Rs 30,000 for Thursday. The cost of ticket for Friday was above Rs 23,000. Fares from Thiruvananthapuram has also recorded a steep hike. The fares are fluctuating and not many seats are available.
July-September is considered off-peak season and fare to Thiruvananthapuram a day prior to the journey is usually Rs 6,000 to Rs 8,000, but sources say it has now skyrocketed in the wake of huge demand after the closure of services at Kochi airport. “Many Kochi-bound passengers opted for Thiruvananthapuram since it is closer than the other airport in Calicut,” said an official.
Ashwathy S, a resident, said: “I was planning to go to Kerala for Onam holidays and had booked a fight to Kochi. But my flight on Thursday got cancelled because of floods. I’m unable to book a ticket to Thiruvananthapuram as the airlines have hiked fares without considering the gravity of the situation. Many roads are in bad shape and the hike in is a double whammy for those who want to visit their families in distress. In the face of natural calamities, airlines should have taken a human approach.”
Passengers travelling between Bengaluru and Kochi on Wednesday faced difficulties after flight operations at Kochi airport were suspended till Saturday. Several Kochibound passengers were stranded at KIA after the cancellation of 15 flights. BIAL sources said only one flight from Kochi —Indigo flight (6E521) scheduled at 7.35amlanded at KIA. The remaining 13 flights were cancelled. Cochin International Airport Limited officials said operations have been cancelled till 2pm on August 18 due to incessant rain and excess water flow from Idukki dam.
The authorities urged passengers to check their flight status with respective airlines in advance to avoid inconvenience. The airlines have promised refund to affected customers.
INTER-STATE BUS SERVICES HIT
The Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) on Wednesday cancelled bus services from Bengaluru to places like Kannur, Kozhikode and Kasaragod in Kerala.
On Wednesday evening, a KSRTC Airavat multi-axle bus coming from Kozhikode to Bengaluru broke down in Sultan Bathery, Wayanad, and passengers had to be shifted to another vehicle. The entire area was inundated as rains lashed Kerala. “We operated a few morning buses between Bengaluru and Kerala and will take a decision on resuming services only after analysing the situation,” said a KSRTC official, adding services between Karnataka and Kerala via Salem wasn’t hit so far.
With KSRTC suspending services, many passengers were stranded at various bus stations across the city. Private bus operators too have scaled down operations to Kerala following flood alert. Many travel and tourism companies have cancelled tour packages to Munnar, Kuttanad, Idukki, Kumarakom and Sabarimala.
On Tuesday, KSRTC cancelled its premium services between Bengaluru and Mangaluru. Officials said premium services to Kukke Subramanya, Dharmasthala and Kundapur via Shiradi Ghat are suspended till further notice. However, express service buses (Karnataka sarige) via Charmadi to Mangaluru will operate.
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