Steep increase in airfare to Gulf countries; Expatriates in shock

Expatriates are shocked by the massive increase in ticket prices by airlines when the gulf countries lifted the ban on travel during Covid days. Those who have been stranded in the country for months are now getting ready to return. Despite the steep rise in price, many people are traveling to avoid losing their jobs while others are waiting for the rate to drop.

The service provided by Air Bubble under various agreements with various countries is nominal. As of now, there are only chartered flights and the Vande Bharat Mission service to Saudi Arabia, and residents believe that the fares will go down if normal service is resumed or more services are introduced.

In Saudi, the tickets for direct flights from home are now available for Rs 30,000-40,000. But only those who came home from Saudi Arabia with 2 doses of vaccine would be able to go with these tickets. Non-residents in other countries, including the UAE, will get Rs 75,000-80,000 including a 15-day quarantine package.

Kuwait on the other hand has introduced direct flights, nevertheless, fares from Kerala to Kuwait have not been reduced. Jazeera Airways fares from Kochi range from Rs 96,000 to Rs 144,000. Moreover, the minimum rate from October 14 is Rs 85,808, according to their website.

In the case of the gulf countries- UAE, Oman, Bahrain, and Qatar, the ticket rates may vary according to seasons. Presently, the Kochi- UAE ticket prices start from Rs 25,000 and the rate for travel to Muscut is 40,000- 50,000. The airline, Air India has over 30,000 direct flights to Bahrain, and the airfare for flights from Kerala to Doha is calculated as Rs 22,000-34,000 meanwhile the return charge is 8,873 – 9,255 Rs.