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New Delhi: India's air passenger traffic registered a sharp 43% sequential fall in January as demand slumped during the peak of omicron cases.

Around 6.41 million passengers took to the skies in January 2022 compared to 11.20 million passengers in December, and 7.73 million passengers during January 2021, according to the latest data from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA).

In comparison, 10.52 million domestic passengers travelled by air in November, 8.99 million passengers in October and 7.07 million in September.

Major scheduled commercial airlines registered 60.5-73.4% passenger load factor (PLF) in January, down from 67-86% in the previous month.

PLF measures the capacity utilization of airlines.

IndiGo ferried 3.56 million passengers during January to report 55.5% market share and 66.6% PLF,during the month. The airline has carried 6.14 million passengers in December.

Air India carried about 0.66 million passengers during January, recording 60.6% PLF and a market share of 10.2%. The airline had registered 0.99 million passengers during December.

SpiceJet carried 0.68 million passengers during January, recording 73.4% PLF and a 10.6% market share. The airline had carried 1.15 million passengers in December. GoFirst (formerly GoAir) catered to 0.63 million passengers, reporting a 66.7% PLF and 9.9% market share during January. The Wadia Group-led airline had ferried 1.19 million passengers in December.

Vistara and AirAsia India ferried about 0.48 million and 0.30 million passengers, respectively, during January. Vistara’s PLF was 61.6%, while its market share was 7.5%.

AirAsia India, whose PLF stood at 60.5%, recorded a market share of 4.6% during the month.

Vistara and AirAsia India ferried about 0.86 million and 0.70 million passengers, respectively, during December.

Average daily domestic air passengers 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 249,000 in the week ended 12 February, up from 196,000 in the previous week, ICICI Securities said in a recent report.

Daily departures during the week increased to 1,873 from 1,663 in the previous week, it added.

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