In an effort to provide better services to passengers, private airlines companies will not have ATM machines inside the aircraft to help passengers purchase overpriced eatables served by the cabin crew. The move comes after many passenger complained of not having enough cash to purchase snacks when they are served by the cabin crew, making it difficult to them to tide over the hunger pangs in mid-air.
Jignesh Shah, a stock broker for whom the move has come as a big relief, said, “I have the habit of munching on something between meals. I usually carry my bag of thepla and khakra when I am travelling. But these guys don’t allow you to carry eatables. Besides, the snacks they serve are so over priced that I end up spending my entire cash on buying that cold tasteless samosa. Now, with these ATM machines, the problem of cash shortage will be taken care of.”
Private airlines Grow Air, which has already installed ATM machines in its flights has said that the response has been overwhelming. “The scenes remind you of the queues outside banks during the demonetization exercise. Almost 90% of the passengers availed the service for buy our in-flight snacks. They all were patiently standing for their turn in the aisle,” said Sam Walia, CEO of Grow Air.
The idea of ATM came after a lot of brainstorming which saw many options such as ‘bank loan for purchasing snacks’ to help ease passenger inconvenience.
Gaurishankar Chaubey aka Gary C, who has been working with Grow Air for last 5 years was happy with the idea of cash dispensing machine and shared his thoughts. “The number of unsuspecting passengers who used to take snacks thinking it to be free and return it later after seeing the price tag has definitely gone down. The only issue that needs to be settled is that of loose change. We usually find it difficult to give change to those who purchase our snacks, which has led to many heated arguments. Hopefully they’ll find a solution to this too.
As per sources, DGCA has taken note of the issue of loose change and is working with private airlines to sort out the issue at the earliest. “We are planning to price snacks at Rs.500 and Rs.2000 so that there wont be any need to give change,” said the CEO of another private carrier.