Sunday, June 20, 2021

Slight uptick in passenger movement at Goa airport as 2nd wave ebbs

Panaji: The decline in Covid-19 cases across the country, particularly in the metros, has given domestic airlines a breather as people are once again taking to the skies. The Airports Authority of India (AAI) has seen a slight improvement in passenger footfalls and flights ever since Goa’s daily Covid caseload started to decline and as Maharashtra, Delhi and other states eased restrictions. Goa airport had recorded a near 90% drop in passenger footfalls from April 1 onwards, with airlines also cancelling daily flights. Over the last week, there has been a noticeable increase in passenger movement at the airport with around 26 flights operating on Saturday.

Two of those flights — from Bengaluru and Delhi — were diverted to Mangaluru due to poor weather conditions. An IndiGo Delhi-Goa flight circled thrice before being diverted.

“There have been 13 arrivals on Saturday. The passenger load factor has gone up slightly and flights are operating with 60-75 passengers, mainly on the weekends,” said Goa airport director, Gagan Malik.

Stakeholders said the easing of restrictions has encouraged people who were fed up of staying at home, to travel. “They either come and stay in hotels for a break or just stay in hotels and work. Anyway, they have to work from home,” said a source.

20/06/21 Newton Sequeira/Times of India

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