Airlines in India carried a total of 74.76 lakh passengers amongst them in February 2016. Thanks to 2016 being a leap year, the extra day in February helped the airlines clock a growth of over 24%, a little higher than the average 20% which the industry has seen for the last 13 months.
The script of the story remained the same with Spicejet clocking above 90% load factors, its tenth month in a row, and being the leader with 92.3% Load Factor. The market share leadership continued with IndiGo, with 36.8% Market Share. Vistara continued to be the lowest in Load Factors at 73.9%.
Air Asia India had the least cancellations while Air Costa had the most in February 2015.
Every airline except Air Costa saw an increase in Departures, Passengers carried and Available Seat Kilometers (ASKM) over the same month last year.
On Time Performance
Vistara continued to be the table topper with 90.7% while market leader IndiGo came in second at 82.9%. As IndiGo starts more red eye flights, the airline could see some drop in On Time Performance again.
A consistent performer on this front has been Jet Airways which recorded an OTP of 82.2%. The airline has a complex network as compared to IndiGo or Vistara, due to a mix fleet, sub fleet and swaps between domestic & international unlike any other airline in the country.
Air Asia recorded the lowest OTP of 75.6%. Among pan India carriers, the highest OTP was by IndiGo and the lowest by Spicejet at 77.7%.
On a year on year (YoY) basis, Jet Airways and Air India improved their OTP the most.
As predicted the market share dynamics did not shift much on a month on month basis. However, YoY saw Jet Airways and Air India losing market share by 3.1% and 2.4% respectively. Spicejet, Vistara and Air Asia gained market share by 3.9%, 1.5% and 1% respectively.
IndiGo was the only carrier to carry more passengers over the previous month, which is a good feat considering lesser number of days and leaner period.
The split between traffic carried by Low Cost Carriers to Full Service Carriers stood at 61:39. 45.94 lakh passengers flew on Low Cost Carriers while the remaining 28.82 were flown by Full Service Carriers.
While the departure count stood at 54:46 in favor of Low Cost Carriers.
While Trujet has announced some expansion, Air Pegasus continues to cancel flights and operate its limited network with two ATR72 aircraft. Air Costa seems to be losing steam too, with the announced launch of operations to Delhi not materializing and fleet not seeing any significant increase in terms of number of aircraft.
What to expect in March?
Barring IndiGo, no other airline has deployed additional capacity in March. Major capacity addition by IndiGo was also on the red eye flights, which will lead to increase in ASKMs & departure but may be at a reduced load factor initially.
Major changes in the stats will only take place post April, which will see changes effective on account of Summer schedule, induction by IndiGo, re-jig by Go Air & Vistara as well as additional utilization by Jet Airways.
On the load factor front, March could see higher load factor on a year on year basis as airlines have tried to sell their inventory early and close the financial year on a good note. While on the market share front, the nominal slide by IndiGo could be reversed.