What Domestic Air Travel Trends of the Festive Season Reveal?

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At times like this, when the world is fighting the COVID-19, no doubt Airlines have been hit hard by the pandemic and so as the travel and hospitality industry. At the outbreak of the virus, having no options left, airlines have cancelled the flights, stopped specific sectors or even halted operations in regions as specified by the respective government bodies.

Today, though the high flying steel birds started taking off in regions wherever permissible and possible, passenger demand and 'capacity utilization' has been an ongoing concern for airlines as the demand for air travel is yet to see positive signs. Studies, reports and experts have different viewpoints that are conveying mixed messages to passengers. Nevertheless, airlines are trying every way to induce confidence in passengers by following the highest levels of safety and hygiene.

Now, in the current situation of work from home, no frequent business trips, safety concerns along with a mixed state of mind, passengers hardly show any interest to travel unless there is a need. As the festive season is around the corner, one may be curious to know what is the domestic air travel scenario. Can I or we travel, is anyone else travelling, or is it only me or us? If so, what are the sectors in which domestic travel is happening? To help clarify a few of these thoughtful questions of passengers or aviation enthusiasts, Cleartrip, a global online travel company, has shared some data points with Aviationscoop. Insights on the domestic air travel bookings for the festive season on the story ahead.

Percentage Increase in Price Fare Compared to Last Year During the Upcoming Holiday Season:

Airline pricing is approximately 10% lower than last year, and volumes are expected to be around 40% - 50% of last year. This pricing trend could imply that while we see a revival in demand, airline capacity utilization remains under stress. Therefore, airlines are probably responding by reducing prices to manage their load factors.

Popular Flight Routes as Booked by End Consumers:

Popular Flight Routes - for representational purposes

Top 10 Destination Airports and Source Airports:

Top 10 Destination Airports and Source Airports - for representational purposes

The top routes and destinations reveal that most travel this festive season is from major metros and business centres to destinations in the north and the east such as Patna, Delhi, Lucknow, Varanasi. This probably indicates a preference for spending time with families. Goa is the only major leisure destination that features in the top 10.

Cleartrip highlights this year they are witnessing lower levels of forward bookings, and customers prefer to book close to the travel dates. Customers are also placing a high emphasis on safety and flexibility as evidenced by search volumes on its TravelSafe page, and higher attach rates on Flexifly.

What is Flexifly?

When you book with Flexifly, you can reschedule your flight by paying the fare difference. The rescheduling and convenience fees you incur will be refunded to you immediately after you finish rescheduling.

Percentage of Bookings Done over Business Class or Premium Economy During the Current Scenario

The company shares Economy class accounts for more than 99% of its bookings. This reveals that passengers safely and quickly want to get their travel done for now and not bothered about their class of travel.

Percentage of People Visiting Holiday Destinations like Kerala or Goa

Around 6% of the traffic is for Goa and Kerala. It can be noted that every travel to these destinations cannot be classified as holiday travel as booking platforms do not attach reason for travel with the booking. The share may change as we approach closer to the festival dates.

Aviationscoop also urges passengers to follow the safety guidelines and avoid travel even if you have minor symptoms. Any irresponsible behaviour, will not only trouble you but also the  co-passengers, crew and Industry as a whole. Take care, cooperate with the airlines, and reach your destination safely.

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A Hodophile who enjoys Nature, Food & Technology. At AviationScoop, I focus on #Aviation - Apps, Technology, Consumer, Luxury and Travelling Experience.

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