Boeing Boeing

March 13, 2009 2 Comments

It all originated when I went to airport to pick my little nephew who was traveling alone for the first time. Baby wanted me to escort him with loads of apple juice, cheese sandwiches and some tongue-in-cheesy answers.

His first question was on UDF. As to why his papa has to take additional ticket while travelling from Bangalore to Bangkok when he already has one. And why he did not buy one for the little champ.

His next question was- If airline sells tickets at Re 1, why AC II tier takes a min of Rs 1800 one way when it takes more time than flight and still more people travelling in trains. Also, what does airline do with all those Re1 coins? Hmmm hmmm

Well, travelling from era of 3k tickets to Re 1 ticket, a lot of us use to wonder the principle behind airfare. And even still, most of the airlines are running into financial losses with larger no of people taking the cloudy route. Until this day, when my little bundle of joy came forth posing the same curiosity, entrusting his didi as always, to have answers for all his inquisitiveness.

I was interrupted the moment I started with “I guess it is the operating costs like…” with a request to come forth with the exact keywords, doing away with the “I guess” repatriate. Hmmmmm

So, I do not guess but now quite certain about the major cost contributors for my or your airline tickets. And some of them are-

1. Landing & parking charges at airports: It is the biggest cost component and as it suggests, is the fee levied by airports on the air crafts. It however varies from airline to airline.
2. Ground charges: The “on ground” charges for aircrafts on the time spent while on ground, between flights. It is a time based cost and depends on the nature of aircraft [low fare carriers or full service carriers] Ex: Low airlines spends less in comparison of full service carriers loading up baggage, carrier meal etc
3. Then there is fuel surcharge, passenger service fee, insurance, departure tax [optional] etc
As passengers we essentially pay only basic fare+ fuel surcharge+ PSF [passenger service fee].
So, next time you buying yourself a ticket you must check-
1. Basic fare i.e. your full economic fare, fuel surcharge and passenger service fee. YQ or any other customer borne tax
2. Also, if you aren’t sure of your journey plan, do check the refundable fare if it’s mere basic fare or any tax component included.

The little one listened to all with rapt attention and I wonder if he blinked all during this while. As if he, using his basic math of addition et al, was trying to ink a small profitability statement in his mind. “Finish your sandwich”, I said. We shall make the project report later when you grow up to college at least. But till that time let’s see you wish list for spending next 2 days with me. He smiled and happily obliged, sipping away to glory.

And then at last, his 3rd air warfare question was on prying hostess aunties who kept intruding his privacy by checking on him as if he is cradle kid, pinching his already red cheeks and all those fanfares as if he will get lost while in that closed aircraft. I am not a kid, you see masi, I pack my sandwich on my own and even know how to bake wafers on microwave!!! Now I do not have any answers for that. Do i? :-)

About UDF
The new UDF [User Development Fee] of Rs 260 has being levied on all passengers [except infants under 2] travelling from Bangalore [AKA Bengaluru] International Airport.
Ministry of civil aviation, GOI has approved the bill and said to use the amount for the development and maintenance and to provide other services and amenities at this state of art airport.

Special UDF counters are built outside the terminals where the receipt is required to be shown before entering the terminal. So now you need to reach airport even early with a combined margin of 3 mins to 15 mins [off peak and peak] and yes, don’t forget to carry the exact changes if you intend to pay by cash.

Well, do not be bogged as that is just a small component to make your air travel from Bangalore a bit too expensive [considering the new location and traffic]

The autor is half Human, half machine. Go Figure or just revel in what I write


  1. Anonymous22 March

    You talking about your nephew piu? Nice chap...Also, cool composition!!!

  2. Hi, no blog for long time. Wassup.. waiting to read your new blog!!!


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