There are many budget airlines in the country, but refreshments are not that budget-friendly. Even normal tea and coffee will cost a minimum of ₹100.
But Cochin International Airport Limited (CIAL) is setting an example by serving tea and snacks at ₹15 and coffee at ₹20 thanks to intervention by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) on a complaint from Thrissur District Congress Committee (DCC) general secretary Adv. Shaji J. Kodankandath.
Since passengers have to report hours ahead of the flight departure, many, especially the elderly and children, invariably buy tea, coffee, or snacks from shops inside airports, noted Adv. Kodankandath.
Mostly, shops at airport terminals charge 10 times higher than normal prices for items sold. “Those running shops inside airports charge exorbitant rates at their own whims and fancies. Their justification for it is that they have to pay huge rent for the spaces occupied,” he said.
Airports are run with taxpayers’ money. So, every airport should have at least one shop selling tea, coffee, and snacks at reasonable prices to protect the interests of the common man, he urged in his letter to the PMO. Thanks to the PMO’s intervention, the CIAL authorities have ensured that tea and snacks are available at select shops at the airport at reduced rates.
“It will be a boon for hundreds of pravasis and Hajj pilgrims from the State. I hope the other airports too will emulate the CIAL experiment,” said Adv. Kodankandath.