The Bengaluru International Airport received 33.65 million passengers during the Calendar Year(CY) 2019, registering a 4.1% growth over the previous year’s 32.33 million.
While international passenger traffic witnessed double-digit growth of 14%, an upswing from 4.27 million in CY 2018 to 4.87 million in CY 2019, domestic traffic grew by 2.6%, from 28.05 million in CY 2018 to 28.78 million in CY 2019.
In a statement, the Kempegowda International Airport said 2019 had been a ‘turbulent year for Indian aviation, mostly impacted by the closure of a large airline and supply-side challenges caused by the grounding of some aircraft types’. These factors had a ripple effect as the air traffic management (ATM) at Bengaluru Airport was down by 0.1% as against the double-digit CAGR witnessed in the previous five years (CY14 to CY18).
Notably, international movements remained on the upswing, growing by 13.0% over CY 2018, owing to the launch of new routes and new flights in winter 2018. Domestic movements saw a slump of 1.8%, added statement.
Meanwhile, domestic cargo remained positive, registering a 4.1% growth. The total domestic cargo processed during this period was 149,603 Metric Tonnes (MT), as against 143,701 MT in CY 2018. In the same period, international cargo dropped by 4.1%, with the overall cargo shipment down by 1.0%, said in the statement.
“The aviation market in India is in recovery mode after a volatile period. We estimate that passenger volumes at Bengaluru Airport will be between 55 to 65 million passengers per annum (mppa) in the next five years. To support this growth, BIAL is investing Rs 13,000 crore for infrastructure expansion, including the South Runway, which is operational, and the first phase of Terminal 2,” said Hari Marar, MD & CEO, Bangalore International Airport Limited (BIAL).
“Passengers at Bengaluru Airport have come to associate our airport with a high-quality travel experience. With passenger volumes increasing, BIAL introduced several technological initiatives to enable a hassle-free and seamless airport, with launch of several technology initiatives such as the fully-automated self-bag-drop machines and Smart Security Lanes. We even did a real-life test of the biometric-based self-boarding process – DigiYatra. The citizens of Bengaluru have come to associate the airport with more than just travel – The Quad by Bengaluru Airport and the Concert Arena now draw non-travellers to the Airport as well,” Marar added.
On the domestic front, Delhi and Mumbai continued to be the most travelled-to destinations from Bengaluru, while Singapore and Dubai were the top international cities by annual scheduled passenger movement CY19.
Seven new destinations and two new international airlines were introduced during the course of the calendar year. Two more – Japan Airlines to Tokyo and Lufthansa to Munich – are set to operate from summer 2020.
According to the airport officials, currently, Bengaluru is connected to 82 destinations, including 25 international cities. As many as 36 passenger airlines (eight domestic and 24 international, including four Indian carriers) operate to and from Bengaluru on a regular basis. In addition, there are 14 cargo airlines, including two Indian carriers.
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