Tuesday, July 07, 2020

Flyer count nosedives by 42% at Kolkata airport after flights to and from six worst-hit cities go off radar

Kolkata: On Monday, a 37% drop in flights at Kolkata airport led to over 42% dip in passenger count over the previous week with high-density routes like Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai along with Ahmedabad, Pune and Nagpur going off the radar. Flights from the six cities in high Covid cases cities were suspended from Monday following a request by the state government, reducing the daily flight count from 65 to 41. Though there is no official ban on flights from Kolkata to these six cities, airlines have cancelled them citing operational difficulty.
“We generally have decent occupancy in all flights to and from Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai. Most of the sectors that are still open have around 5% lower passenger loads. The absence of passengers is even more evident now,” said an airline official.
On Monday, IndiGo operated 24 flights against 36 flights it had been operating since July 1. Vistara didn’t operate any flight while SpiceJet, Air Asia and Air India operated six, four and seven flights, respectively. GoAir has not scheduled any flight to Kolkata yet since operations resumed.
The drop in passengers also affected the micro-economy in the vicinity of the airport. Till 5.30pm on Monday, only 34 passengers had hired pre-paid cabs, compared to 150-plus bookings on Sunday. A snacks vendor’s revenue dipped from Rs 1,200 on Sunday to Rs 300 on Monday.
07/07/20 Tamaghna Banerjee/Times of India
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