Want to fly cheap on domestic flights? Carry no baggage

Want to fly cheap on domestic flights? Carry no baggage

At present, passengers can carry up to 7 kilograms of cabin baggage and 15 kilograms of check-in baggage

Representative image. Credit: iStock

Air travellers carrying no check-in baggage will now be charged less for flight tickets.

Civil aviation regulator DGCA gas now allowed airlines to “unbundle” certain services and make them chargeable on an “opt-in” basis.

These services include preferential seating, meal or snacks or drink (except water), use of airport lounge, charges for carrying sports equipment or musical instruments and a fee for special declaration of valuable baggage.

The announcement by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) comes weeks after the government approved an increase in fare bands for domestic flights.

“As part of airline baggage policy, scheduled airlines will be allowed to offer free baggage allowance as well as Zero baggage/no check-in baggage fares,” a DGCA circular said.

However, the airline will have to inform the passenger booking ticket under such fare scheme of the charges that shall be applicable if he turns up with the baggage for check-in at the airline counter, it said.

“These unbundled services must be provided on 'opt-in' basis and not on 'opt-out' basis,” the civil aviation regulator said, adding that the charges for such services will be a fixed amount and shall not vary with the base fare for a particular sector.

The DGCA said that the decision to unbundle services was taken on the basis of feedback received from passengers.

This has the potential to make basic fare more affordable and provides the consumer with an option of paying for the services which she or he wishes to avail, the regulator said.