Domestic Air Passenger Traffic Grows 1.18% In September
Passengers stand with their luggage as they queue at a boarding gate. (Photographer: Christophe Morin/Bloomberg)

Domestic Air Passenger Traffic Grows 1.18% In September

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Indicating further slowdown in the aviation sector, domestic air passenger traffic this September increased by just 1.18 percent over the same month last year, according to data released by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation on Thursday.

In August this year, domestic passenger growth was 3.87 percent compared to the same month last year.

Domestic air traffic last month consisted of 11.79 million passengers compared to 11.35 million passengers in the same month last year, a jump of 1.18 percent, as per data.

Regarding September data, a senior official of DGCA said, "the numbers are disappointing. They have pulled down our projection (for 2018-19)...to 4-6 percent. The good news is that we have managed to withstand the sad exit of Jet Airways (India) Ltd. and maintained a positive growth despite three months of negative or almost flat growth."

The passenger load factor of four major airlines -- Air India, GoAir, AirAsia and Vistara -- declined in September as compared to August last year, as per DGCA data.

The passenger load factor measures the seat capacity utilisation of the airline.

"The loss in the fleet on account of Jet Airways has largely been recovered and we expect an all time high fleet of more than 616 aircraft in the air in a month's time from now. With some more aircrafts joining our fleet by Dec. 31, we expect a return to double digit growth in the early part of next year," the official added.

IndiGo maintained its lead position with 48.2 percent share of the domestic passenger market in September, the data showed.

SpiceJet Ltd.'s market share decreased from 15.5 percent in August to 14.7 percent in September, giving it the number two spot, as per the data.

The market share of Air India, GoAir, AirAsia and Vistara was 13 percent, 11.5 percent, 6.3 percent and 5.8 percent, respectively, last month.

During September this year, a total of 701 passenger related complaints were received by the domestic airlines, according to DGCA data.

The number of complaints per 10,000 passengers carried for the month of September was around 0.61.

Among major domestic airlines, Air India topped the list of passenger grievances with 1.6 complaints per 10,000 passengers in September, while SpiceJet was on number two position with 0.6 complaints per 10,000 passengers, as per DGCA data.

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