Union Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju on Tuesday said the domestic aviation market continued on the growth trajectory in December last year despite demonetisation as the air passenger traffic surged nearly 24 per cent in the previous month.
“Dec’16 betters the Nov’16 record of highest number of passengers in a month and records 23.9% growth. No demonetisation slowdown,” Raju, the Civil Aviation Minister tweeted. “Almost one crore passengers in December and ten crore in 2016. Indian Aviation is on a roll. May we continue to have safe and vibrant skies,” he said in another tweet.
Domestic air passenger traffic rose 23.9 per cent in December 2016 to 95.52 lakh from 77.09 lakh registered during the same period of 2015 even as IndiGo continued to deliver poor on time performance besides losing market share by almost 2 per cent in the month.
However, domestic travel demand in 2016 touched nearly 100 million mark, with the Indian airlines flying a total of 998.88 lakh ((99.88 million) passengers between the January-December period of 2016 as compared to 810.91 lakh in 2015, an increase of 23.18 per cent over 2015. The DGCA data showed that Gurgaon-based budget carrier IndiGo’s markets declined to 40.3 per cent in December last year as against 42.1 per cent in November 2016 despite carrying more number of passengers at 38.48 lakh in the month.
Also, the airline’s on time performance from four major private airports stood at a poor 61.6 per cent where as the rival SpiceJet delivered the best OTP for the third consecutive month at 70 per cent. Significantly, national carrier Air India increased its market pie by over one per cent to 14 per cent in December, having flown 13.35 lakh passengers in the month. For the 21 consecutive months, SpiceJet registered a seat factor of more than 90 per cent in December at 93.7 per cent.