New Delhi/Mumbai: Jet Airways (India) Ltd cornered a nearly 30% share of the domestic passenger market in February, the highest in at least three years, as rival Kingfisher Airlines Ltd curtailed its operations by nearly one-fourth, data released by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) shows.
Jet Airways, together with its unit Jet Konnect, had 29.8% of India’s domestic passenger market share. The last time the airline had such a share was in December 2008 at 29.4%.
By Abhijit Bhatlekar/Mint
Overall passenger traffic in February grew 8.3% to 5.06 million.
Market share of the troubled Kingfisher Airlines slipped to 9.7% in February compared with 11.3% in the preceding month.
Kingfisher Airlines had said it will fly 28 of its 61 aircraft till February, but has now filed its summer flights with DGCA with 16 planes, indicating a further reduction in the market share in the coming months.
“We garnered more market share largely because of shrinking Kingfisher Airlines capacity. We did not add any capacity during February,” a senior Jet Airways executive said, requesting anonymity.
He said Kingfisher Airlines’ corporate customers were turning to Jet Airways, IndiGo and Air India owing to erratic schedule and flight cancellations.
Kingfisher Airlines has been cancelling more than 50 flights a day since 17 February.
Budget carrier IndiGo had the second highest market share in February, at 21.3% compared with 20.8% in the previous month, while SpiceJet Ltd’s market share slid to 15.9% from 16.3%.
National flag carrier Air India Ltd, with a market share of 16.8%, said its domestic revenue for February rose 57.5%.
The carrier made Rs 974 crore in revenue from domestic operations in February compared with Rs 747 crore in the year-ago period. The leap year added an extra day’s revenue to the carrier this February .
“It is very difficult to say that this percentage of people are coming from Kingfisher Airlines. Some of them definitely would be coming to us, not all. But I think that is not the only reason for the improved performance of Air India,” said Rohit Nandan, chairman and managing director at Air India.
The carrier, which does not charge for food, has become aggressive in the market announcing an all new food menu on its flights from 1 April to attract passengers of both the business and economy classes.