Thursday, January 28, 2021

Passenger traffic fell by 60% at SVPI

Ahmedabad: Increase in business travel, coupled with a boost in tourism in 2019, had boosted passenger movement at the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport to 1.17 crore. However, the restriction on international flight movements and widespread travel restrictions due to the Covid-19 pandemic had led to a fall in passenger movement by 60% to 47.06 lakh in 2020, revealed data provided by the Airports Authority of India.

Tour operators felt that leisure travel which took a hit due to pandemic has impacted air passenger footfalls.

“Leisure travellers account for a significant chunk of fliers. However, this time around, widespread apprehensions due to the pandemic impacted leisure travel adversely. Moreover, as international flights had been shut for the longest time, footfalls were adversely affected,” said Virendra Shah, chairman of Travel Agents’ Association of India (Gujarat).

“That apart, even corporates had imposed travel restrictions. This impacted MICE (meetings, incentives, conferences & exhibitions) travel also to a great extent,” Shah added.

Air passenger traffic touched 1.17 crore last year also due to improved connectivity. “The connectivity to international destinations from SVPI airport has improved tremendously. Direct flights to new destinations were ntroduced, and direct connectivity to existing destinations increased significantly. Moreover, some of the airlines also upgraded their aircraft to ones with higher seating capacity. This collectively pushed up passenger movement,” said a source.

28/01/21 Times of India

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