The advantages and disadvantages of air transport.
Air transport is of recent origin in the development of transport system of a country. It is the gift of 20th century to the world. The second world ware has stimulated the growth of air transport and it has made progress in the recent years because it is the fastest way of transporting of goods. The transport of goods through airways is costly and therefore it is designated to carry costly goods of small quantity. When goods or passengers are carried by air, certain documents are issued because the carriage of Air Act, 1972 has made it obligatory. The documents issued when goods or passengers are carried are:
- Passenger Ticket
- Luggage Ticket
- Air Consignment Note.
In India two nationalized airways operate which help in the conduct of air transport. These airways are the Indian Air Lines and the Air India International. The former is concerned for domestic operation whereas the later is concerned for international operation.
The following are some of the advantages of air transport:
I. High Speed:
Air transport is the fastest mode of transport and therefore suitable carriage of goods over a long distance requiring less time. There is no substitute for air transport when the transport of goods is required urgently.
II. Quick Service:
Air transport provides comfortable, efficient and quick transport service. It is regarded as best mode of transport for transporting perishable goods.
III. No Infrastructure Investment:
Air transport does not give emphasis on construction of tracks like railways. As no capital investment in surface track is needed, it is a less costly mode of transport.
IV. Easy Access:
Air transport is regarded as the only means of transport in those areas which are not easily accessible to other modes of transport. It is therefore accessible to all areas regardless the obstruction of land.
V. No Physical Barrier:
Air transport is free from physical barriers because it follows the shortest and direct routes where seas, mountains and forests do not obstruct.
VI. Natural Route:
Aircrafts travels to any place without any natural obstacles or barriers. Because the custom formalities are compiled very quickly. It avoids delay in obtaining clearance.
VII. National Defence:
It plays a significant role in the national defense of the country because modern wars are conducted with the help of aero planes. Airways has a upper hand a destroying the enemy in a short period.
Inspite of many advantages air transport has a number of disadvantages. These disadvantages are:
Air transport is the most risky form of transport because a minor accident may put a substantial loss to the goods, passengers and the crew. The chances of accidents are greater in comparison to other modes of transport.
II. Very Costly:
Air transport is regarded as the costliest mode of transport. The operating cost of aero-planes are higher and it involves a great deal of expenditure on the construction of aerodromes and aircraft. Because of this reason the fare of air transport are so high that it becomes beyond the reach the common people.
III. Small Carrying Capacity:
The aircrafts have small carrying capacity and therefore these are not suitable for carrying bulky and cheaper goods. the load capacity cannot be increased as it is found in case of rails.
Most of the air transport are uncertain and the unreliable because these are controlled by weather condition. It is seriously affected by adverse weather conditions. Fog, snow and heavy rain weather may cause cancellation of some flights.
V. Huge Investment:
Air transport requires huge investment for construction and maintenance of aerodromes. It also requires trained, experienced and skilled personnel which involves a substantial investment.