National carrier Aeroflot has started selling nonrefundable tickets, taking advantage of a new law that was intended to aid the country's first low-cost carrier, and Transaero is set to follow suit.
President Vladimir Putin in April signed a law allowing airlines to start selling nonrefundable tickets, which paved the way for the creation of Russia's first budget airline, Dobrolyot — a subsidiary of Aeroflot.
An explanatory note to the law said the measure was meant to decrease the price for airline tickets and improve ridership.
Previously, passengers were entitled to full refunds on tickets if they canceled more than 24 hours before departure, and 75 percent of the total cost if they canceled within 24 hours of the flight.
Aeroflot has already made its "budget" and "promo" tickets nonrefundable, according to Transport Clearing House, or TCH, a company that settles bills between travel agents and airlines.
The company's "value" tickets will still be refundable for the most part, though passengers will be charged 25 percent for returning them within 24 hours of the departure, and 100 percent within 40 minutes of take off, TCH said Tuesday in an online statement.
Transaero will start selling nonrefundable tickets on July 1.
Dobrolyot began flights to the Crimean city of Simferopol earlier this month and sold 4,000 tickets within the first 12 hours of opening for business.