Low-cost India return fares: Mumbai for Dh734; New Delhi for Dh815

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By Bindu Suresh Rai  www.emirates247.com

If travel plans are looming on the horizon for a trip to India, the season may be just ripe to snap up some killer deals.

Flights to India have dropped as low as Dh734 for a return ticket to Mumbai next month, via Etihad Airways, while a flight to New Delhi is priced at just Dh815 with the same carrier.

Fluctuate those dates in a weekend in March or April and even Emirates may offer up a fare for as low as Dh1,100, with online flight portals such as Cleartrip and Makemytrip offering these take-off fares, with additional coupon codes to serve up a further discount.

Turn further afield and the Abu Dhabi-based Etihad is offering flights to the popular destination of Kochi for as low as Dh856, while the Sharjah-based low-cost carrier is serving up that fare for Dh945 for mid-March.

Meanwhile, a direct flight to Bangalore is as low as Dh1,090 via Jet Airways from Abu Dhabi.

Travel industry experts say the competitive price war for the India sector has been fuelled further with the option of greater connectivity with the opening of Dubai World Central, which has carriers Gulf Air and now Qatar Airways also taking off from Al Maktoum International from March 1, along with the boost in the number of seats to India through the Etihad-Jet Airways alliance following the former’s 24 per cent equity stake in the Indian carrier.

In its wake, the Abu Dhabi carrier has doubled the number of flights and tripled the number of seats to Mumbai and New Delhi, adding a second daily service and introducing wide-bodied jets on both routes.

The airline has also detailed out plans for a major expansion drive into India for 2014, with increasing capacity to Bangalore, Chennai, Kochi and Hyderabad. More info