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New Delhi: Domestic air passenger traffic registered a 20% recovery in February, as travel demand picked up after a slump in the previous month amid the covid-19 pandemic.

Around 7.7 million passengers took to the skies in February compared to 6.41 million in January, according to the latest data from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA).

In comparison, 11.20 million domestic passengers travelled by air in December, 10.52 million passengers in November and 8.99 million in October.

Air travel demand fell sharply towards the end of December and in January during the peak of omicron cases.

However, air passenger traffic has recovered with a decline in active coronavirus infections since February.

Major scheduled commercial airlines registered 71.9-89.1% passenger load factor (PLF) during February, up from 60.5-73.4% in the previous month. PLF measures the capacity utilization of airlines.

IndiGo ferried 3.95 million passengers during February to report a 51.3% market share and 85.2% PLF. The airline has carried 3.56 million passengers in January.

Air India carried about 0.86 million passengers during February, recording 84.1% PLF and a market share of 11.1%. The airline had registered 0.66 million passengers during January.

SpiceJet carried 0.82 million passengers during February, recording 89.1% PLF and a 10.7% market share. The airline had carried 0.68 million passengers in January.

GoFirst (formerly GoAir) catered to 0.73 million passengers, reporting 87% PLF and 9.5% market share during February. The Wadia Group-led airline had ferried 0.63 million passengers in January.

Vistara and AirAsia India ferried about 0.75 million and 0.45 million passengers, respectively, during February. Vistara’s PLF was 87.1%, while its market share was 9.7%.

AirAsia India, whose PLF stood at 83.2%, recorded a market share of 5.8% during the month.

Vistara and AirAsia India ferried about 0.48 million and 0.30 million passengers, respectively, during January.

Average daily domestic air passenger traffic rose sharply in the week ended 12 February, compared to the previous week, due to a decline in active cases of coronavirus.

The average number of daily flyers rose to 332,000 in the week ended 19 March, up from 293,000 in the week ending on 19 February 2022, according to data from ICICI Securities.

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