It is things like these which make you understand further why Air India is where it is today.
Air India is currently running a scheme – Companion Free Offer. Under this scheme, the companion s defined as child, spouse and parent. If its siblings - Brother/Sister may be included if the Passenger is Single or Childless. A Self declaration regarding the status has to be submitted by the Passenger availing the Scheme.
So one person has to pay the full IATA fare and the second passenger gets free ticket; he/she only have to pay the taxes/surcharges.
Well, a call was made to the Air India reservation office and we asked for booking tickets for two, from Mumbai to Washington, under economy fare. Well, the fare quoted under this companion free offer – Rs.2,95,003 for fully paid one passenger and companion pays Rs.63,500 as taxes. We literally fell off the chair and told the operator that she had made some mistake because under normal circumstances, when one does not opt for any offer, the fare per passenger comes to around Rs.83,500, all inclusive. Thus if we book without offer, we pay around Rs.1,67,000 for two tickets to Washington and under the “free” scheme, we end up paying over Rs.3,58,000! How does this make any sense? The operator said, that it what it is, take it or leave it. We obviously left it!
Further digging showed that when they say IATA full fare, it is the rate that could be the highest will be charged. Yet, something as shocking as almost Rs.3 lakh, that too for economy?
This is how they have run into losses! Even their so-called offers are not well thought of. Surely, if it was a private sector airline, at least under the “offer” the difference would have been Rs.10,000 cheaper, minimum. With so much losses and still rising, it’s a pity that Air India never learns. No wonder there are no buyers queuing up!