Airline- Checked in baggage allowance inconsistency- Domestic vs Intl sector

  6 (Goal: 100,000)

Petitioning: Domestic airline co. to honour the baggage allowance of the international sector

Petitioner: Proud Indian started on June 23, 2015

Shri P.Ashok Gajapathi Raju Honourable Minister for Civil Aviation, Government of India;
Dr Mahesh Sharma, Honourable Minister of State with independent charge of Ministry of Tourism, Government of India

Dear Sirs,
I wish to draw your attention to an important issue which has been causing a lot of inconvenience, distress and financial loss to the international passengers using domestic flights either to connect to international sector or while connecting to domestic airline after completion of the international leg. The issue is, the domestic airline operators do not match the baggage allowance for the international sector, if the travel is on a different PNR. To elaborate, most of the domestic operators, have a checked in baggage allowance of 15 Kilograms per person in economy class and all of the international flights offer a checked in baggage allowance of atleast 23 Kilograms in the economy class. This inconsistency in baggage allowance policy hurts the passengers who are travelling from or to smaller cities within India where there is no direct international flights.

I am sorry to state, the domestic airline companies rather recently, have started taking advantage of the aforementioned inconsistency and have made this as a new source of revenue. To provide you with an illustration, the leading domestic operator, charges Rupees 300/ kg as extra baggage fees, in normal circumstance, the airline can garner upto Rupees 2400 per person (considering 8 Kg of additional baggage, 23 kg minus 15 kg). The airlines are operating under the guise of low cost provider but have these hidden charges to make their profits. The extra baggage fees is also inconsistent and varies by the airline operator.

Below, I wish to quote, the mission statement of the Ministry of tourism as published in the Results Framework Document (RFD) for 2014-15, which indicates there will be an exponential growth in foreign tourism:
"Achieve a level of 11.24 million Foreign Tourist Arrivals and 1450 million Domestic Tourist Visits by the year 2016- 17 by promoting sustainable tourism as a priority, enhancing the competitiveness of the Indian tourism industry, improve tourism products to meet new market requirements, create world-class tourist infrastructure, ensure greater visibility for tourist facilities, and augment the human resource base in this sector."

Drawing your attention to another report from the Ministry of Tourism, India Tourism Statistics at a glance, 2013 (couldn't find the 2014 publication), there were 6.97 Million Foreigners arrivals in India and 16.63 Million Indian National departures from India and both the categories are registering a growth of 5.9% and 11.4% respectively. If we conservatively consider, 20% of the passengers of the total 23.2 Million passengers in 2013, who either arrived in India or departed from India, had to pay the extra baggage allowance of Rupees 2400 (as calculated above), the various airlines would have made an extra Rupees 1134 crores by charging for the extra baggage. More than the airline profit, we are concerned about the inconvenience and botheration to the general public at large.

My sincere and humble request to you, is to introduce a new/ amend an existing policy or issue a directive, which will force the domestic airline companies to honour the baggage allowance of the international sector if the travel (connection) is within 24 hours.

The above will be in alignment to our Hon. Prime Ministers and your government’s vision of, policy simplification and welcoming NRI's and foreigners to India to promote tourism.
I sincerely hope you will look into the above, as a matter of urgency and make the necessary changes or issue necessary directive to the domestic airline companies.

I am requesting my friends and all the affected people to support and sign this petition.

Best regards,
Proud Indian