Mumbai: The much-awaited India-Pakistan World Cup semi-final face-off at Mohali on Wednesday will cost you nearly as much, if not more, as a trip to a foreign destination.

Airlines, hotels and tour operators are cashing in on the fans' craze for seeing the clash of the archrivals, pushing up tour prices to nearly Rs 50,000 for just a day. Air tickets and room tariffs are skyrocketing.

Confirming the same, Iqbal Mulla, treasurer, Travel Agents Association of India and owner, Treasure Tours and Travel Pvt Ltd said, "An India-Pakistan match is taking place after a long time and all the hotels and airlines have hiked their prices because of this.The cost of travel packages, too, has shot up to such an extent that you can make a trip to Thailand for the same amount or less."


Soaring fares

Mulla said the economy class airfare has gone up to as high as Rs 30,000 and room rates, too, have nearly tripled in the last few days.


"Most of the flights are full and agents have also hiked their commission to make the most of the opportunity. The entire package costs between Rs 50,000 and Rs 60,000," he said.


The VIP and chair block for the match has been sold out, according to information on Cutting Edge Events' website.


For a price of Rs 20,000, they were offering one match ticket, merchandise a t-shirt or cap and return stadium transfer from a central point of the city in an AC Coach.


Other travellers

People going to Chandigarh or Mohali for reasons other than the cricket match have been badly hit and tour operators say they have advised them not to travel to these places until Wednesday to save on airfare.


Simran Chadda, a Juhu resident who wanted to travel to his hometown Chandigarh on Wednesday, had to do exactly that.


"My kids have a few holidays around that time and we had planned a trip to Chandigarh to meet my relatives. We had to postpone it, however, as the airfares are very steep because of the match.Spending Rs 20,000 for a one-way ticket doesn't make sense. I would get a return ticket for much less on a normal day," he said.


VVIPS accommodation


Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his wife Gursharan Kaur are likely to stay at the Punjab Raj Bhawan - the Governor's House, while President Pratibha Patil, if her visit is confirmed, will be put up at the adjoining Haryana Raj Bhawan.

 

Courtsey:Mid-day.com