Millennium Post

Domestic air passenger traffic rises 19% to 114 lakh in Sept

Mumbai: Domestic air passenger traffic grew by around 19 per cent year-on-year to 113.98 lakh in September, driven by the heavily discounted tickets that the airlines continue to offer despite steep hike in jet fuel price amid stiff competition.

At the same time, budget carrier IndiGo slipped to the third spot in on-time performance (OTP), with rival GoAir recording the highest OTP at 90.4 per cent from the four key airports in the country, as per the data released by aviation regulator DGCA Wednesday.

The number of passengers carried by domestic airlines stood at 113.98 lakh in September this year, against 95.83 lakh in the same month last year, registering a growth of 18.95 per cent, as per the data.

IndiGo maintained its market leader position, carrying 49.20 lakh passengers and grabbing a market share of 43.20 per cent in September, followed by Jet Airways, which flew 16.13 lakh passengers and cornered a market share of 14.2 per cent, the data showed.

SpiceJet carried 13.63 lakh passengers and had a market share of 12 per cent, while national carrier Air India flew 13.45 million passengers and grabbed a market share of 11.8 per cent.

The passenger load factor in September has shown increasing trend compared to the previous month due to beginning of festive season, the DGCA said.

According to the data, SpiceJet recorded the highest load factor during September at 93.2 per cent, followed by GoAir with 90.6 per cent.

Meanwhile, Boeing's profits surged in the third quarter after a favourable US tax settlement, and the company raised some key annual projections on Wednesday as its order book stayed robust.

The aerospace giant, which has benefited from a multi-year investment boom in global air travel, reported profits of $2.4 billion for the quarter ending September 30, a 30.6 per cent jump from the same period of the prior year. Revenues rose 3.8 per cent to $25.1 billion.

Boeing lifted its full-year revenue forecast range by $1 billion to $98-100 billion. Chief Executive Dennis Muilenburg pointed to "strong underlying performance" as well as growth "across our businesses ... throughout the year" as factors in boosting 2018 revenue and earnings forecasts.

Commercial airplane deliveries actually fell compared with a year earlier, but profit margins in the business surged on higher production of key planes. The company booked 171 net orders, a decline from the second quarter, but well above the prior year's level.

Boeing's defence business turned in an operating loss due to $691 million in one-time costs connected to investment programmes. But the company scored major new defense contracts during the quarter.

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