The Manohar International Airport at Mopa, which was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, will open on January 5, tomorrow. The opening does not bode well for air travel as travellers are about to receive a punch to the gut as well as find their pockets far lighter than expected.
Passengers will have to pay 30 to 75 per cent higher airfare to land at this new airport as compared to Dabolim airport.
Anticipating the possibility of a large number of tourists arriving in Goa on the Republic Day weekend, the airlines have increased their ticket prices.
Those arriving from Mumbai and landing at Mopa airport on January 25 will have to pay Rs 9,913. If you want to land at the Dabolim airport on that day, paying Rs 6229 will suffice.
Passengers coming from Delhi will have to pay a slightly higher rate than Dabolim at the Mopa airport, which opens for business tomorrow. The Delhi-Mopa ticket is Rs 5429, while the Delhi-Dabolim ticket is Rs 5138.
However, on January 25, the fare will increase drastically and the Delhi-Mopa ticket (lowest) will be Rs 8350 and Delhi - Dabolim ticket will be Rs 6655.
Tourists coming for the Republic weekend will have to spend Rs 15,909 per person for the journey from Delhi to Dabolim and back. If the same journey is booked via Mopa, they will have to shell out Rs 17,412 from their pockets.
A ticket for travelling from Bangalore to Dabolim on Republic Day is Rs 4678 and the minimum ticket for landing at Mopa on the same day is Rs 5375. Usually, the average price of a Goa-Bangalore flight ticket was Rs 3500.
Mopa airport is a private airport and GMR has spent Rs 2.870 crore on it. It is expected that 70 per cent of passengers coming to North Goa will prefer this new airport. The passenger service charge of this airport is also high.
A service charge of Rs 450 per domestic passenger and Rs 1100 per international passenger will be charged at this airport. Next year this rate will be reduced to Rs 430 and Rs 730 respectively.