Air traffic jumps by 100%, touches pre-pandemic levels
The sky’s the limit, they say, and for the aviation sector in India, this is true. The airline industry never expected to witness such robust growth after the pandemic. But with more routes and airports opening up, it could only get better. This increases the country’s investment opportunities while simultaneously increasing job chances. This is nation-building at its best, something that the Adani Group believes in and has been steadfastly working towards it.
All the seven Adani airports saw an increase of 92% in domestic and 133% in international travellers. There has been a rise in the number of domestic 58% and international 61% flights.
It shows the dedication and hard work of the operator, Adani Airport Holdings Ltd (AAHL), that led to higher customer satisfaction levels in airports, resulting in increased footfalls. Air traffic jumped by around 100% compared to the previous year, taking the number to pre-pandemic levels with more than 14.25 million passengers using these airports over last year. This upward trend is expected to continue, and it is anticipated that the number of trips people will take in a year will increase. One of the factors driving this growth is the restart of tourism after the pandemic.
Being the second busiest airport in the country, Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport (CSMIA) recorded nearly 8.44 million passenger movement in January-February 2023. CSMIA witnessed nearly 2.22 million international and 6.22 million domestic passengers.
The first two months also saw huge rush at Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International (SVPI) airport, Ahmedabad. It had 1.74 million domestic passengers flying in and out of the airport. Its international airport recorded 283,379 travelers.
Reaching for the Sky
India’s per capita air passenger traffic (i.e., total air passengers/ total population) stands at 0.12. It is 2.7 (22x) for the United States and 0.31 (2.5x) for China, indicating massive potential for Indian aviation. India is expected to have 1 billion passengers by 2040 and expected CAGR (compound annual growth) for the next 20 years is 8.5%. As many as 31 cities are expected to have dual airports system while Delhi-NCR, Mumbai metropolitan region and Bangalore will potentially have three. The number of operational airports is expected to cross 200 with total capex requirement exceeding USD 100 billion (including land side developments). The number of Adani airports serving over 10 million passengers in a year will zoom from 7 to 47. This is supported by fleet projections of over 2,500 aircrafts by 2040 (today, India has ~600 operational aircrafts). With increasing penetration of wide bodies in fleet, the traffic is expected to increase multifold as it will gear our market closer to a hub-based operations, compared to point- to-point today.
Being the busiest airport in Uttar Pradesh, Lucknow’s Chaudhary Charan Singh International Airport (CCSIA) recorded nearly 1.04 million passenger movements in both months. CCSIA witnessed fruitful first two months with nearly 136,880 international and around 9.03 lakh domestic passengers.
Considered the gateway to Northeast India, Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International (LGBI) Airport has flights to and from 32 domestic and two international destinations. It recorded a footfall of 902,694 passengers, witnessing a sharp increase from the corresponding months last year.
Thiruvananthapuram recorded 299,850 and 299,770 domestic and international footfalls, respectively. The airport has connectivity to 10 domestic and 12 international destinations. Mangalore saw an increased traffic of 209,713 national and 84,356 foreign travellers.
Both CSMIA and CCSIA handled record passenger movement on a single day. While Mumbai recorded around 1,51,543 travellers on 25 February 2023, Lucknow witnessed over 18,000 passengers on 31 January 2023 transiting through the airports.
The growth in traffic is evidence of Adani Airports’ attempts to promote passenger confidence through initiatives like e-gates, barcode scanner, friendly and cooperative ground staff, Pranam Service, free WiFi, retail and F&B stores, and automated parking system, etc. for a better customer experience and safety standards adopted across all airports.
This rise was driven by positive sentiments among air travellers and a strong surge due to the festive holiday season. The operator is well-aware of both the challenges and opportunities that come with high passenger volumes, particularly during holiday seasons, because these may vary daily or even hourly depending on the schedule of flights.
Delivering great experiences and encouraging repeat trips are crucial in today’s connected world. To do this, Adani airports try to keep waiting times and congestion to a minimum with the help of operations managers, who are trained to have a clear picture of what is happening on the ground to implement changes quickly and effectively.