The International Air Transport Association (IATA) on Friday said a slowing economy and high operating costs have affected domestic passenger traffic in India which fell 9.9 percent year-on-year in September.
“Indian domestic traffic plummeted 9.9 percent compared to a year ago, the worst performance for any market, reflecting the slowing economy and capacity reductions that have suppressed domestic travel,” IATA said in a statement.
“September capacity fell 5.9 percent, dropping the load factor 2.9 percent points to 64.9 percent, the lowest of any market,” IATA said.
Official data had shown earlier that domestic air passenger traffic fell 8.03 percent for the fifth straight month in September. Air passengers’ traffic slipped to 40.18 lakh from 43.69 lakh in August.
The trend started in May, during which the traffic came down 0.87 percent to 54.48 lakh from 54.96 lakh in the corresponding month of 2011. June recorded a substantial fall of 3.84 percent at 51.08 lakh from 53.12 lakh in the like month of 2011.
The data released by the civil aviation ministry, however, showed the total passengers carried by all the domestic airlines in the January-September period grew by a marginal 0.90 percent at 438.39 lakh passengers from 442.18 lakh during the corresponding month of 2011.
Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh had recently said the economic slowdown had adversely affected passenger traffic growth in the past couple of months, but that it would rebound.