Domestic air passenger volume falls 57% to 52.71 lakh in October

Domestic air passenger volume fell 57.21 per cent to 52.71 lakh in October over the year ago period, as airlines continued to operate at a much lower capacity, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation's (DGCA) data showed on Wednesday.

The number of total passengers carried by domestic airlines in October last year stood at 1.23 crore. However, passenger load factor (PLF) showed some recovery in October due to increase in demand after easing of lockdown restrictions and onset of festive season, DGCA said.

The average load factor of nine domestic airlines, which operated flights during the month, was at 59.2 per cent, with scheduled commuter airline Star Air clocking the best PLF at 71.6 per cent.

State-run helicopter operator Pawan Hans Ltd had the lowest PLF at 21.9 per cent in the previous month.

Air India flew 4.94 lakh passengers during October, while IndiGo, the largest carrier by market share, flew 29.7 lakh passengers. Passenger volume of SpiceJet and GoAir stood at 7.04 lakh and 3.95 lakh, respectively, during the month.

AirAsia India carried a total of 3.74 lakh passengers, while Vistara flew 3.39 lakh passengers, as per DGCA's data.

In terms of punctuality in operations, as much as 98 per cent of AirAsia India flights from four key metro airports -- Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderbada and Bengaluru --departed and arrived on time.

Air India had the lowest on-time performance from these airports at 90.7 per cent during October, DGCA data showed.

"We are delighted that our continuous efforts to ensure reliable and efficient service has enabled us to retain the No. 1 position in on-time performance (OTP)," AirAsia India Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer Sunil Bhaskaran said in a statement.

"We have approached the challenges the industry has been facing with the pandemic with refined policies and procedures as an opportunity to leverage technology. This has enabled us to lead the OTP charts this year with meticulous processes," he added.

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