In the past ten years, domestic air travel in India has - pardon the pun - taken-off. Traditionally, trains were the primary mode of travel throughout the country - safe, affordable, and reliable. Although the rail system continues to dominate domestic transport, there has been a significant increase in the number of Indian-based airlines. Now more than ever, travelers are relying on the Indian skies and not the Indian tracks to reach their destination. Since 2005, I have witnessed a shift in both the passenger demographic and number of travelers. Airlines are now catering to the masses and making air travel affordable. After all, there are over one-billion potential customers!
With the rising costs of airfare these days, including baggage fees, meals for purchase, and fuel surcharges, travelers are spending more time researching the best deals. Some of you may not know that Sodha Travel reserves international airfare worldwide and not just to the Indian subcontinent. However, many of our clients have taken advantage of our discounted consolidated rates to Europe, South America, Asia, and Africa. Check out what a few of our clients saved recently when booking tickets:
Kingfisher Airlines, an India-based airline, will be joining the Oneworld global alliance. First, India must grant regulatory approval, and the entire process is expected to take eighteen months. Currently, Oneworld brings together eleven airlines, including American, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, and Iberia. Oneworld has been named the World's Leading Airline Alliance for seven consecutive years and serves over 700 destinations worldwide.
For those of you flying between destinations in India, please remember that most domestic airlines only allow for one checked bag at 45 pounds (20 kg) and one carry-on bag at 22 pounds (10 kg). Fees may apply for additional and/overweight luggage, so please pack accordingly - especially since most international carriers allow two bags per passenger.
SpiceJet, an Indian based airline, has won the 2009 award for the Best Company in Travel and Tourism: South Asia. This prestigious award recognizes the airline as being the greatest contributor to regional travel and tourism. The title was granted by the World Travel Market in London, a premiere event for the international tourism industry.
Many of you have inquired about Lufthansa's nonstop service from PDX - FRA. Sadly, this route is being suspended as of September. Additionally, the NW/Delta nonstop from PDX - AMS will be cut back to a limited number of flights per week. We are hoping that Lufthansa will resume the service in Spring 2010 to serve our PDX clients!
Here’s a new rule that you should know about. Middle names that are included on passports and drivers' licenses will soon have to be reflected on the passenger's ticket when they fly within the US, and by December if they fly overseas.
This is to update you that the Government has approved on 9th Feb 09 the levy of Airport Development Fee (ADF) by the Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL) to charge Rs. 200 for each domestic passenger departing from Delhi and Rs. 1300 for each international passenger (including KTM & Paro), with effect from 1st March for the next three years.