Both domestic and international air travel will get costlier from April 1 as the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has decided to hike the air security fee (ASF). The rise in ASF for domestic air passengers is Rs 40, while for international air passengers it is Rs 114.38.
ASF that funds security arrangements in airports across the country is one of the components in ticket pricing. "Aviation Security Fee for domestic passengers will be levied at the rate of Rs 200 per embarking passenger. Aviation Security Fee for international passengers will be levied at the rate of US$ 12 or equivalent Indian Rupees embarking passenger. The new rates will be effective on tickets issued on or after April 1, 2021," the DGCA order had stated.
Children under the age of two years, diplomatic passport holders, airline crew on duty, people travelling on official duty on aircraft operated by Indian Air Force, people on UN peacekeeping mission duty, passengers in transit, transfer, deporting an airport due to involuntary rerouting are exempted from paying ASF.
The last hike in ASF was around six months ago in September 2020 when it was increased for domestic flyers by Rs 10, taking the fee to Rs 160. For international flyers the hike was from $4.85 to $5.20
The security is taken care of by the Central Industrial Security Force under the Ministry of Civil Aviation. The aviation industry across the globe has taken a severe beating due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As borders closed to curb the spread of coronavirus, international flying has been practically shut. Domestic flying reopened on May 25, 2020.