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Why Domestic Flights are So Expensive in India in 2022

India is a diverse country with rich cultural heritage and scenic adventure spots. With the development of more and more tourist destinations, the aviation industry in India has undergone a transformational change in the last decade. However, one of the biggest issues that continue to plague the aviation industry in India is the high cost of domestic flights. In this blog post, we will discuss the reasons why domestic flights are costly in India in 2022 and what factors impact ticket prices.

1. High operational costs

The operational cost of running an airline in India is quite high. From airport charges and fuel prices to employee salaries and maintenance costs, there are several factors that impact the cost of operating a domestic airline in India. According to industry reports, airport charges account for nearly 30% of an airline’s operational cost, followed by fuel prices and employee salaries.

2. Uneven distribution of air passengers

The uneven distribution of air passengers across the country is another reason why domestic flights in India are expensive. A large portion of the Indian population lives in rural areas, and air travel is still considered a luxury, reserved only for the affluent. Hence, airlines have to charge higher prices to compensate for the lower demand in these regions. On the other hand, metro cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, and Hyderabad have a higher concentration of air travelers and see more demand, resulting in higher ticket prices.

3. High taxes and levies

The tax structure in India is complex, and the aviation industry is no exception. The government imposes several taxes and levies on airline operators, including air navigation charges, passenger service fees, and airport taxes. These taxes and levies add up to a significant portion of the cost of a domestic flight ticket in India. Additionally, the Goods and Services Tax (GST) on domestic flight tickets is another factor that drives up the price of domestic flight tickets in India.

4. Limited competition

The domestic airline industry in India is dominated by a few major players. Due to limited competition, airlines have the power to charge higher prices, especially during peak travel seasons. While the Indian government has introduced several measures to promote competition, including the UDAN scheme, which aims to increase air connectivity to remote areas, the impact of these measures is yet to be seen.

5. Dynamic pricing strategy

The airline industry globally employs revenue management techniques that allow them to adjust ticket prices dynamically based on several factors, including demand, competition, and supply. Airlines use computer algorithms to monitor market demand, and prices get adjusted accordingly. This strategy allows airlines to charge higher prices during peak travel seasons or when demand is high. However, this can lead to higher ticket prices during non-peak travel seasons as well.


Domestic air travel in India remains a costly affair, and several factors contribute to the high ticket prices. While the government has taken several measures to promote competition and reduce operational costs, the impact of these measures is yet to be seen. Additionally, the COVID-19 pandemic has further impacted the aviation industry, driving up costs and reducing demand. For now, it seems that domestic flight tickets in India will continue to be costly, making air travel a luxury for many.

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