Miscellaneous

Random musings!

Indian airlines offering free cancellation & reschedule on Nepal flights

Like you all know, Nepal was struck with a massive calamity yesterday in the form of an earthquake. In such a situation, the airport had to be shut down for a while, and flight cancellations are being made due to the fact that the airport is required for coordinating relief efforts. Many an Indian airlines have stepped up efforts to help those stuck in Nepal, apart from carrying relief materials for free. Jet Airways is offering a full refund on confirmed tickets issued for travel from and to Kathmandu between April 25, 2015 to May 1, 2015. Alongside, if you wish to reschedule your plans, there will be no rescheduling charges if your travel is within these dates. Air India…

Continue Reading »

How my travel life changed after courtship!

Gaah, this is something I’ve been wanting to write about for a while, and I hope Shipra will take this in good spirit. I have been noticing a pattern and I just want to have it off my chest. As a top-tier with most airlines I do business with, I am usually given the opportunity to select the nicer seats out there, sometimes by virtue of pre-selection, sometimes by virtue of checking in 48 hours prior. Because Uncle Scrooge did not pass on his wealth to me yet, I am still a predominantly Economy class flyer on a lot of the domestic segments that I do. Now, back in the day, I was almost always to be found on 10C…

Continue Reading »

India gets back its Category 1 safety rating by FAA

Like I’d written on this blog about 14 months back, India had received a downgrade of its safety assessment rating from the American civil aviation authority FAA, which conducts an inspection on the regulators of all the countries who operate flights to the USA. The downgrade was done on the premise that India’s regulator did not have the expertise to supervise India’s airlines, and needed to beef up their know how to be able to get back to Category 1. The impact of this downgrade, a privilege that only few other countries had, was that India’s airlines could not launch new flights to the USA, and the ones which they already had, would face additional scrutiny. Also, no American airlines…

Continue Reading »

5 reasons why it is a good time to be earning airline miles in India right now

I often get asked about how to score a mileage ticket, but I don’t get asked as often about how to earn the miles. People think miles are earned only by flying, something that has changed over the years. Miles can be earned with so many activities, and every activity counts towards your goal for that reward ticket. So stay with me for a moment and let me build my argument. As someone who has been travelling for a lot of years (maybe not as long as some of you who have been flying since I was in my diapers!), I’ve noticed a genuine shift in the way airlines have moved from rewarding loyalty to withdrawing all the perks to…

Continue Reading »

Google Flights launched for India

Hunting down a fare just became cheaper. Google Flights, which is a visual interface offered by Google to meta-search for flights, is now available in India at www.google.co.in/flights. The beauty of this interface is that you will be able to now search for flights by date, date ranges, calendar, location and even your budget for a random trip. Dates: Google Flights offers a calendar feature, where you can see one-way or round trip pricing for various sectors across days in one go. Take for instance this round-trip pricing on BOM-DEL for end of January. You can click on the graph, and customise by duration. You will get options to see various flights by fare and by time as well. Clicking…

Continue Reading »

Transit UK airports without a visa now

Back in October I had written about the new policy change with the UK government, which would allow for Indians to transit the UK without the need for a Direct Airside Transit Visa or a regular Visa, as long as they had a visa for the USA or Canada. Now, I wasn’t sure about this myself because this did not update on the UK Government’s website as quickly as I hoped it would. Heathrow is one of the busiest airports around the world, but clearly they were not a favourite for many Indians because of the high costs to even transit the airport. Apart from the other issues that go with it, such as an Air Passenger Duty which is…

Continue Reading »

Travel is not the cohort of the rich

While my government (of India!) continues to look at air travel as a cohort of the rich, due to which they are keeping aviation turbine fuel so highly taxed for years, I recently happened to notice a great inspiring story on the Internet about a Tea Vendor, who has been saving diligently to fulfil his travel ambitions… As per NewsMinute, which originally carried the story, a gentleman called Vijayan, based in Cochin, has been a Tea vendor for over 40 years, and he has been saving diligently an amount of INR 300 ($5) everyday for his travels. Not only has he been able to travel around India, which I believe is full of scenic places to go, he has been…

Continue Reading »