Passengers will have to pay more for flying out of Delhi for the next couple of months. The Airports Economic Regulatory Authority (AERA) has given the go-ahead to Delhi Internation Airport Limited (DIAL) to impose Rs 65.98 plus tax on departing passengers from February 1, 2021, to March 31, 2021. This additional amount is being collected in lieu of "fuel throughput charge' which has been levied on airlines till January 15, 2020.
The new charge per passenger, who is departing from IGI Airport, will drop in the consecutive financial years. From Rs 65.98 in 2021, till will drop to Rs 53 in FY22, Rs 52.56 in FY23 and Rs 51.97 in FY24.
AERA still hasn't approved DIAL's request to levy an additional charge of Rs 200 and Rs 300 on each outbound domestic and international passenger, according to The Times of India. This is being planned to recover some of the lost revenue during the COVID-19 flight bans. AERO had sought to impose this charge till March 2024. "AERA has asked DIAL to approach it after March 2022 regarding this levy if its financial problems persist. The operator is examining what step it can take, such as an appeal to a tribunal given its financial deficit," a source told the daily.
DIAL has anticipated a total revenue shortfall of Rs 3,538 crore between April 2020 and March 2024 and had therefore requested the Civil Aviation Ministry in December 2020 to order the AERA to take into consideration the loss in revenue caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
DIAL CEO V K Jaipuriar in a note to Aviation Secretary P S Kharola wrote, "Viability gap support of Rs 3,538 crore would be required for third control period (till FY 2024) to maintain operations, service levels, safety and security of the airport... the (declining) traffic scenario has taken a toll on DIAL's financial position and put forth a challenge for sustainable operations".
"In case, AERA does not consider our request of viability gap, DIAL will end up with a serious cash flow deficit and find itself difficult to continue the airport operations," he had added.