NEPAL: Most expensive destination among Asian Countries
According to the newly appointed MD of Nepal Airlines SugatRatnaKansakar, Nepal is the most expensive tourist destination in Asia. Nepal Airlines lack of its international reached the other international airlines hike their fair charge as they will.
To make air travel to Kathmandu fair and economic Nepal Airlines feel the necessity to increase its reach in different destinations. The cost of fair tickets are low in the places in which Nepal Airlines are in control. Unless the Airline increases its destination routes, the tourism industry may not flourish as predicted.
In a World Bank meeting around 22 months back Kansakar remembers he had been asked the question by foreigner about Nepal being most expensive tourist destination. Lara working at International Finance Corporation also highlighted the question by pointing, around 25 top International Airlines operates their flights in Nepal but lacks competition among themselves. Kansakar said “The shear lack of management, lack of aircrafts and inability to expand its destination lead to the event”.
Once, Nepal airlines had reached its fleet to London but now the airlines is constricted to fly in few countries,Kansakar added. The air travel tickets from America to Hongkong, Canada, Japan, Bangkok, Delhi is much low compared to Nepal.
International Airlines Companies are charging 30% to 40% more and earning more money from people travelling to Nepal. He adds the emphasis by recalling his friend’s event. A week ago his friend was returning from Japan in Thai Airlines. The Airlines charged him 1 lakh 35 thousand. The same flight only costs 50,000 rupees if Nepal Airlines conducted their flight in the region.
Maintaining the flight tickets cost around 40-50 thousand rupees, the Nepal Airlines would even make profit he said but International Airlines Companies are charging 1 and half lakh for the same flight.
The foreign working in Nepal at different International organization states the fair charge being high and they too travel once or twice in 4-5 years. The expensive fair ticket is the only reason that there is decreasing number of tourists in Nepal. The research shows the low fair cost leads to the increase air traffic in countries like Thailand and Singapore.
To make Nepal Airlines as active as other airlines Finance Ministry should invest around 50 core annually to place advertisement, promote and reach international channel. Nepal Airlines being public institution its does not need to increase its ticket prices to make profit, gradually increasing effective services and destination will work best for the airlines Kansakar added. According to Kansakar, the profit from International flight should be invested in improving the status of domestic flights and to add new aircrafts to increase tourism and connect various villages. The regular scheduled flight should be implemented to improve the eminence of Nepal Airlines. The reduced flight cost of Kathmandu-Delhi is the fresh example of it. A year ago, the routine flight from Kathmandu to Delhi costs up to 45,000 rupees but the flight operated by Nepal Airlines in new Airbus A320, fair charge costs around 20,000 rupees. Nepal Airlines is currently operating as low as 7,100 rupees for its Kathmandu to Delhi flight.