Domestic air traffic grew by 16.43% in Sept

Domestic air traffic grew by 16.43% in Sept

The end of tourist season had some effect on domestic airlines' seat occupancy but September still saw a growth of 16.43% in passengers, up by almost 1% from the previous month.

According to the data provided by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), domestic airlines carried 95.83 lakh people this September, compared to 82.3 lakh in the corresponding period last year.

Airlines flew 96.9 lakh people in August compared to 83.81 lakh in July. Overall, 849.94 lakh people flew in the first nine months of this year, recording a growth of 16.91% from 726.98 lakh during the corresponding period of 2016.

The DGCA noted that the passenger load factor in September has shown a "declining trend" compared to previous month primarily due to the end of tourist season.

SpiceJet led the pack with a seat occupancy of 94.2% while market leader IndiGo clocked a seat occupancy of 85.2%. While SpiceJet showed a slight decline, IndiGo showed an increase in passenger load factor.

"This is the 31st month in a row that SpiceJet has flown with load factors in excess of 90%, a feat unparalleled in global aviation history. Significantly, this is also the fifth consecutive month when our load factors have been 94% plus, which firmly establishes our standing as the country’s favourite airline," said Shilpa Bhatia, chief sales and revenue officer of SpiceJet.

The overall cancellation rate of domestic airlines for September was 0.78%, down from August's 0.83% and up from July's 0.79%.

The increase in the cancellation rate is due to Zoom Air not operating a single service last month. Zoom Air (7.14%) and Trujet (3.13%) had the highest cancellation rate.

During September, there was a marginal increase in the number of passenger complaints from 599 in August to 606. The number of complaints per 10,000 passengers carried has been around 0.63.

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