On October 5, the biggest cricket carnival will kick-start in India. After a wait of four years, the ICC Cricket World Cup will begin with defending champions England taking on 2019’s runner-up New Zealand in the first match of the tournament, which will be played at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad. This particular venue will also witness the cracker of a match – India vs Pakistan – which will take place on October 14 as well as the big finale on November 19. Mumbai’s Wankhede Stadium and Kolkata’s Eden Gardens will host the two semi-finals on November 15 and 16 respectively.
Fans are excited worldwide and in cricket-crazy India – also the host of this edition of the World Cup – excitement is running high. Fans are scurrying for deals on flight tickets and hotel rooms as they decide on their travel itinerary to catch the matches, especially those featuring the home team. And as expected, ticket prices and room rents are on the upswing in these places, on and around match days.
Cricket World Cup 2023: Surge In Demand For Hotel Stays
With cricket fans travelling to the host cities to watch India’s matches, hotels in those places are seeing a surge in booking demand. Talking to Zee News Digital, Santosh Kumar, Country Manager for India, Sri Lanka, Maldives and Indonesia at Booking(dot)com, shares, “We have seen a surge in demand for accommodations across cities where key matches are being held, including the highly anticipated India vs Pakistan match scheduled for October 14. The thrill and excitement of watching India play first-hand is a compelling reason for crickets enthusiasts around the world to travel, creating a significant impact on the host city’s occupancy in terms of demand and room rates.”
India Vs Pakistan In Ahmedabad: Airfares See Sharp Rise
While you will often see players of both sides insisting that it’s like any other match, an India vs Pakistan game is the holy grail for cricket fans. Naturally, the excitement and anticipation surrounding the match is huge with fans flying down from across the country to Ahmedabad to catch the game. This has impacted airfares.
Mohit Joshi, Skyscanner Travel Expert, tells Zee News Digital, “As the World Cup fever slowly sweeps across India, we’re witnessing a remarkable surge in travel demand, especially for the highly anticipated India-Pakistan match in Ahmedabad on October 14. This surge in demand has also led to a rise in airfares. The flight prices from Mumbai to Ahmedabad have surged by 125% during the week of 12th-15th October, compared to the same period in 2022, and by 111% when compared to the same week in August 2023. This trend isn’t unique to Mumbai; it’s reflected in the airfares from Delhi and Bangalore during the same time period.”
How Ahmedabad is turning into the Mecca for cricket fans
Mohit Joshi of Skyscanner lists the following key information about flight fares:
· For travellers from Delhi to Ahmedabad, flight prices have witnessed a substantial 74% increase during the week of October 12-15, compared to the corresponding period in 2022. It has surged by 123% when compared to the previous month.
· For travellers from Bangalore to Ahmedabad, there is a 54% increase in flight prices during the same week when compared to 2022. Moreover, prices have soared by 77% when compared to the previous month.
The top cities booking travel into Ahmedabad for the October 12-15 October period are:
– New Delhi
Also Read: ICC Cricket World Cup Schedule Announced, Tournament Begins On October 5, Final On November 19
Expert Tips For Bagging Good Deals On Airfares
If fans are worried about the airfares burning a hole in their pocket, Mohit Joshi has a word of advice. “Even in the face of rising prices, there are still ways to land on cheaper fares. We recommend mixing and matching the airlines and airports you choose to fly with and from to cut costs; consider driving further to an alternative airport might also help capture some cheaper deals; or filter your flight selection by time to identify less popular times in order to land cheaper flight options,” the Skyscanner travel expert shares.