25% do­mes­tic traf­fic in In­dia from met­ros, rest from smaller cities WHAT THE STUDY FOUND

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - FRONT PAGE - Soub­hik Mi­tra soub­hik.mi­tra@hin­dus­tan­times.com

Fly­ing in In­dia is no more re­stricted to met­ros, ac­cord­ing to an anal­y­sis of do­mes­tic flight book­ings seen in Novem­ber and De­cem­ber last year.

The study, con­ducted by travel por­tal MakeMyTrip, states about one-fourth of do­mes­tic air traf­fic in In­dia comes from met­ros and top tier 2 cities, while the rest (76.6%) comes from smaller cities.

Met­ros and top tier-2 cities con­trib­ute mainly to traf­fic on top 15 do­mes­tic routes in metro cities namely Mum­bai, Delhi, emerg­ing tier-2 cities such as Pune and pop­u­lar tourist hubs such as Goa, states the study.

“The air travel mar­ket in In­dia has grown rapidly in one year due to lower air­fares, in­creased seat ca­pac­ity and ex­pan­sion of the In­dian econ­omy that has re­sult­ing in higher dis­pos­able in­comes. Air travel book­ings have ex­panded be­yond top cities, which is re­flect­ing in our find­ings with al­most 76.6% of air traf­fic com­ing from out­side of the top 15 sec­tors,” said Ra­jesh Magow, co-founder and chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer (In­dia), MakeMytrip.

The study said de­spite ini­tial re­ports of a de­mon­eti­sa­tion-in­duced slump in travel, smaller air­ports namely Silchar (100%), Jodh­pur (82%), Indore (41%), Dima­pur (41%) and Am­rit­sar (30%) saw a sur­pris­ing surge in trav­ellers.

Among air­ports in metro cities, Kolkata (32%) saw the big­gest surge in foot­fall, fol­lowed by Delhi (10%).

HT had re­ported about a steep spike in air ticket sales two days af­ter the gov­ern­ment banned Rs500 and Rs1,000 notes.

The study stated most pre­fer book­ing flight tick­ets early than those buy­ing them closer to the date of travel, as it costs less.

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