Bengaluru: Passenger traffic at Bangalore International Airport surged 71 per cent to 27.5 million in CY2022 aided by massive recovery in the domestic passenger volume, which reached 85 per cent of the 2019 (pre-pandemic) level and stood at 24.36-million during the year.
The rapid recovery in traffic was driven by a host of factors including relaunching of key routes and introduction of new routes connecting leading business hubs and travel destinations, among others, Bangalore International Airport Ltd (BIAL) said on Tuesday.
The international traffic recovered 65 per cent of the pre-Covid level at 3.14-million in 2022 as compared to around 940,000 in 2021.
The private airport operator had flown a total of 12.39 million passengers as of December 31, 2021.
There was a sharp increase in passenger numbers during the year-end holiday season with as many as 3.13 million passengers travelling in December 2022 (of which, 2.74 million were domestic passengers) – surpassing the pre-Covid record of 3.06 million passengers in December 2019, BIAL said Besides, there was a 98 per cent recovery in air transport movements (ATMs) compared to pre-Covid numbers while the domestic ATMs saw a 100 per cent recovery in the year gone by, the private airport operator said.
Overall, the domestic air traffic has contributed significantly to the speedy recovery, it stated.
BIAL noted that after the two challenging years of the pandemic, most airlines resumed their operations fully, connecting to an increased number of destinations in 2022 and added that the facility now connects to 75 destinations across India, and an increase of 16 destinations, compared to pre-Covid.
Post-resumption of scheduled international operations in March 2022, Qantas Airways launched direct route between Bengaluru and Sydney with four weekly flights, by making it the first direct connectivity to Australia from South India, BIAL said.
This was followed by Emirates launching A380 service to Dubai, citing increased demand from the Bangalore Airport and South India. Further, Air India’s reinstatement of its thrice-weekly Bengaluru – San Francisco route in December last year made the airport the first airport in South and Central India to get direct connectivity to North America.
Transit passengers helped in recovery of the passenger volume, it said and added that with over 100 daily departures, the share of transfer passengers increased to 15 per cent (+5 per cent compared to pre-Covid years).
The airport operator said that Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Kochi, and Hyderabad were the top domestic routes in CY 2022, contributing approximately 40 per cent to domestic traffic while Dubai, Male, Singapore, Doha, and Abu Dhabi were the top international routes contributing approximately 47 per cent to international traffic.