AirAsia has been forced to break from its usual business model in India by offering passengers free checked-in baggage, it has been reported.
India’s Business Standard revealed that following intervention by India’s Directorate-General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), the new low-cost carrier will have to offer every passenger up to 15kg of free checked baggage.
The directive will come as a blow to AirAsia India, which makes a large amount of its revenues from ancillary services such as paid baggage.
It was planning to charge INR199 (approx. US$3.40) for up to 15kg of luggage, but the DGCA appears to have objected to the concept. Other domestic airlines, including LCCs like IndiGo and SpiceJet, do not charge for up to 15kg of luggage.
The regulator has now asked the AirAsia India to stop collecting the charges for the time being.
AirAsia India will launch on 9 June 2014, on the route between Bengaluru and Goa.