The Passenger Service fee India (PSF) is charged at a flat rate of INR 130 per domestic passenger and USD 3.25 (INR 297.5) per international passenger across the country. The PSF is used to cover security and facilitation at all AAI airports and Private airports in India. Largely, it used to pay Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) who are responsible for security at the majority of the Indian airports.
The current PSF was decided years ago but was never updated. With rising cost, airports found it difficult to pay CISF out of the PSF they earned. Last year, Indian airports owed around INR 1,000 crores to the CISF according to The Times of India. The Government has finally decided to raise the PSF to meet the current expenses of CISF deployment at airports.
According to a new circular issued last week, Passenger Service fee (PSF) will be replaced with Aviation Security Fee (ASF) from July 1, 2019. Domestic passengers will have to pay INR 150 as ASF and International passengers will have to shell out USD 4.85 (INR 339.5) as ASF instead of PSF. This translates to an increase of INR 20 for domestic passengers and INR 112 (USD 1=INR 70) for international passengers from July 1, 2019.
The current increase is just a slight increase per passenger but it goes a long way when you take into account the number of passengers who travel by air per year in India. With more terminals and airports being planned, the cost of security to be provided at airports apart from other costs will definitely rise and the ASF may have to be revised on a regular basis in the years ahead.
What do you make of the upcoming rise of the Passenger Fee in India?