Thursday, March 23, 2017

50% of US-bound Indian flyers to be impacted by US govt curbs on e-devices

Mumbai: Washington DC’s decision to impose curbs on taking iPads and laptops as cabin baggage will impact nearly half of the passengers between India and the US.

Data compiled by aviation consultancy CAPA showed that in FY16, at least 1.3 million passengers flew to the US via airports in the Persian Gulf, and accounted for 49 per cent of the 2.69 million passengers between the two countries.
An overwhelming 82 per cent of passengers to the US travelled via the Gulf, Europe or East Asia. Gulf airlines, especially Emirates, Etihad and Qatar Airways, carried the bulk of the 49 per cent flown on the route, an indication of their dominance in the market. About 27 per cent of US-bound passengers flew via Europe and 6.2 per cent via airports in East Asia. The data are for one-way traffic to the US.

The proportion of flyers from Mumbai and Delhi who travel (one stop) via the Gulf is 30-40 per cent. In case of Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Kolkata and Chennai, the share is 53-63 per cent.

Air India and United Airlines operate non-stop flights from Mumbai and Delhi to the US, which could explain the relatively lower share of one-stop traffic.

Of the 2.69 million passengers, only 468,000 flew non-stop to the US on Air India or United flights. The share of non-stop traffic was around 17.4 per cent of the traffic on the India-US routes.

The US’ decision could see a shift of traffic from Gulf airlines to Air India, Jet Airways and European airlines. Jet Airways does not have a non-stop flight to the US but has code-share partnerships with Air France, KLM and Delta, enabling passengers to travel via Europe. Air India is planning to launch a non-stop Delhi-Washington service from July, expanding its US network. Its share of traffic has increased in the past year with the launch of a Delhi-San Francisco flight.
23/03/17 Anurag Phadnis/Business Standard