In a bid to make refreshments affordable for air travellers, Airports Authority Of India(AAI) has ordered airports to sell snacks and beverages at Maximum Retail Price(MRP).
More than 90 government-run airports across the country will soon sell packaged drinking water at MRP along with snacks and tea at the lowest rate possible.
This decision by AAI has been taken after they received many complaints from passengers about the exorbitant prices charged for water and snacks at airport terminals.
In fact, in March 2018, former Finance Minister P. Chidambaram had tweeted about the high prices of tea at the Chennai Airport which caused many MP’s to debate about this topic in the parliament.
AAI has asked airport authorities to sell water and snacks at MRP at separate counters. However, these rules are not applicable to some of India’s biggest airports such as Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad and Kochi, as these airports are run by private companies.
According to an AAI official, the notice to start different counters was sent to airport authorities last month. The companies running the food courts have been asked to run a separate counter where they can sell selected items at affordable prices.
Today, air travel is not confined to the elite. With the success of the UDAN scheme and low budget airlines, air travel is accessible to people from all segments of the society. However, they have limited options when they have to pay a premium price for tea and snacks. These counters will surely bring them relief.
Airports in places like Pune and Shimla have already set up cheap food counters at their terminals but AAI is looking to make this a permanent norm at other airports across the country.