KIA user fee cut by more than half

Last Updated 15 November 2018, 16:10 IST

In a relief to air passengers, the Airports Economic Regulatory Authority (AERA) has reduced by 54.5% the user development fee (UDF) levied on travellers departing from Kempegowda International Airport.

While UDF for international passengers is now down 54.49%, the fee has been reduced by 54.58% for domestic passengers. The reduced fee will be effective from September 16, 2018, for all tickets issued till March 31, 2019. AERA has notified UDF rates till March 31, 2021.

For international passengers, the UDF will be down to Rs 558 on tickets issued on or after September 16. This is a steep fall from the existing UDF of Rs 1,226. However, the UDF will go up to Rs 716 per passenger for tickets issued on or after April 1, 2019.

For tickets issued on or after April 1, 2020, the UDF will be reduced again to Rs 400. The UDF for domestic passengers has also come down from Rs 306 to Rs 139 (on tickets issued on or after September 16, 2018). For tickets issued on or after April 1, 2019, this will marginally go up to Rs 179 per passenger. The UDF for tickets issued on or after April 1, 2020, will only be Rs 100.

AERA has exempted the following from levy of UDF: Children under two years of age, diplomatic passport holders, airlines crew on duty including sky marshals, persons travelling on official duty on Indian Armed Forces aircraft and on official duty for United Nations Peace Keeping missions.

AERA had initially proposed to cut the UDF by 74%, which would have reduced the fee to Rs 316.80 for international and Rs 79.20 for domestic passengers.

However, after a stakeholders’ consultation meeting here on June 18, the rates were revised. KIA’s operator, the Bangalore International Airport Ltd (BIAL) had urged AERA to retain the existing UDF rates till 2021. It had contended that any reduction at this stage would jeopardise the airport’s planned project.

The Rs 1,200-crore Eastern Tunnel Connectivity proposed as a third access to KIA would have to be shelved. But the tunnel is only a part of KIA’s massive Rs 12,000-crore expansion plan that includes the second terminal and runway. BIAL had warned that AERA would have to hike the UDF in the control period from 2021 to 2026 to compensate for the shortfall.

(Published 01 September 2018, 20:11 IST)

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