Flight Prices from Dubai to Expat Cities Jump Ahead of UAE National Day

Published November 22nd, 2017 - 02:38 GMT
Dubai-Cairo airfares on EgyptAir have increased from Dh1,885 last week to Dh2,825 this week - a jump of 50 percent. (Shutterstock)
Dubai-Cairo airfares on EgyptAir have increased from Dh1,885 last week to Dh2,825 this week - a jump of 50 percent. (Shutterstock)

With a long weekend fast approaching, a number of UAE residents will be planning to fly to their home countries or use this opportunity for a short weekend break outside the UAE.

There's one minor issue, though: Basic economics. The law of supply and demand is affecting airfares, which seem to be rising with every passing day - in fact, every passing hour - as bookings increase and the seat availability reduces.

Data collated by Khaleej Times shows that the biggest fare increase - as expected - will be on the Indian (Kerala) and Egyptian (Cairo) routes during the current period (November 23-26) and the extended holiday weekend (November 30-December 3), with fares jumping more than 70 per cent in just a week due to increased bookings.

The report compares a departure date of November 23 and return on November 26 for this weekend with a departure date of November 30 and return on December 3.

The UAE government has announced holidays from November 30 to December 3 for the public sector while the private sector gets paid holidays from November 30 to December 2 to mark Commemoration Day and the UAE National Day.

"Peak demand, as we see at holiday events like Eid, Christmas as summer are points which force up fares due to the finite capacity available at the time," says Saj Ahmad, chief analyst at StrategicAero Research.

During the high airfare season, Ahmad said passengers can benefit from the airlines' loyalty point schemes (like Emirates' Skywards and flydubai's Open point accumulation programmes), which can often help offset price rises - although much of that price suppression will depend on how many points/miles someone has.

"Also, some carriers offer promotional fares so it makes sense to grab these when they're advertised. Throughout the year, Emirates is renowned for offering extremely competitive fares months in advance of travel and has proven popular.

"Astute buyers get these seats quickly so that when peak travel times roll around, customers aren't having to pay top dollar nor look for alternative fares or changes that then disrupt their travel plans," he added.

According to data available on cleartrip.ae, Dubai-Thiruvananthapuram return fares with departures on November 23 and return on November 26 is around Dh712 on multiple Indian carriers, which increases to Dh1,227 over the next holiday weekend, an increase of 72.3 per cent.

Similarly, Egyptian citizens - which make up one of the larger expat communities in the UAE - planning to fly to their homeland over the next week will have to shell out substantially higher airfares.

Dubai-Cairo airfares on EgyptAir increase from Dh1,885 this week for an economy class fare to Dh2,825 next week - a jump of 50 per cent. Airfares to Beirut - also a popular destination among tourists from the UAE - surge by 71 per cent in a week, from Dh780 to Dh1,335.

Increased bookings during the extended holiday weekend also lift the economy class fares to London from Dubai with Virgin Atlantic flight costing Dh2,865 during November 30-December 3 weekend as compared to Dh2,325 during November 23-26 weekend.

The airfares include budget carriers as well as full-fledged carriers and calculated on the basis of lowest rates available at cleartrip.ae. However, these rates are subject to change. The fares were calculated on Wednesday morning.

Destination (From Dubai)Fare for Nov. 23-26 (in AED)Fare for Nov. 30-Dec. 4 (in AED)Increase (%)
Amman1,4951,5956.60%
Beirut7801,33571%
Cairo1,8852,82550%
Delhi8411,38364%
Dhaka1,2101,3158.60%
Jeddah1,3151,4157.60%
Karachi8058133%
Lahore1,2351,3459%
Mumbai9251,49962%
Riyadh9159251%
Thiruvananthapuram7121,22772%

By Waheed Abbas


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