Saturday, October 10, 2020

AirAsia India sees sustained passenger growth, to induct more aircraft

Despite market speculations over its future, AirAsia India foresees a sustained passenger demand to power its growth in the coming quarter.

Accordingly, the pandemic-battered airline is in fact going ahead with the planned induction of 5 fully-owned aircraft which will bring down the average fleet age to around three years.

In terms of passenger growth, the company conceded that despite directional imbalance in traffic, the trend is getting more evened out with the emergence of metro-to-metro demand.

Not responding to speculation but affirming passengers' belief in the brand, Sunil Bhaskaran, CEO and MD, AirAsia India, told IANS: "So far as the air traffic is concerned, it has been highly directional between metro and non-metro cities, though we are now beginning to see the metro-metro traffic coming back."

"Passenger demographics have changed significantly with the proportion of under 29- year-olds increasing to nearly half of the total passengers and those over 40 reduced to less than half of passengers."

"As young India starts resuming work and planning holidays this festive season, we expect this number to further increase."

However, Bhaskaran pointed out that despite encouraging traffic growth which has been witnessed over the last few weeks, "the harsh reality is that the traffic is still only 35 per cent of the pre-Covid levels on a year-on-year basis and we have a long way to go".

"We anticipate the road to recovery to be gradual and steady; we are cautiously optimistic about the festive season that is coming up," he said.

10/10/20 IANS/Business Standard

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