BLR Airport emerges as key transfer hub for South India
Bangalore International Airport, commonly known as BLR Airport, has emerged as a major transfer hub for South India, supporting the development of India’s growing aviation sector.
Photograph Tweeted by @BLRAirport
The Indian aviation sector has been one of the fastest growing sectors in the world in the first two decades of the 21st century. It has more than doubled from around 169 million in FY 2013 to 2014 to around 341 million in 2019 to 2020, a growth of over 10 per cent per annum.
In the past two decades, a steady influx of low-fare carriers, superior regional connectivity to far-flung cities and rise in regional air travel have transformed the face of Indian aviation, making it the third largest domestic aviation market in the world.
Kempegowda International Airport (or more commonly known as Bengaluru International or BLR Airport), the third busiest airport in India, is making significant contributions to India’s aviation growth story by facilitating robust connectivity to non-metro cities, providing opportunities to people to fly as well as drive regional economic growth. In the process, BLR Airport has emerged as the preferred transfer hub for South India.
Currently, BLR Airport serves 74 domestic destinations (in CY 2021) – the highest ever since airport opening date, as compared to 54 routes during pre-COVID-19 and is also the highest amongst South Indian airports. These additions have mainly been to non-metro destinations, and as a result, flights to non-metro routes have shown a considerable increase from 58 per cent (pre-COVID-19) to 63 per cent in CY 2021. Moreover, between Q1 and Q4 of 2021, traffic on non-metro routes increased by 27 per cent, reinforcing strong demand on these city-pairs.
During the CY 2021, nearly 19 per cent of traffic at BLR Airport comprised of transfer passengers as against – 10 per cent pre-COVID-19. The major airports contributing to high volumes of transfer passengers at BLR Airport were Chennai, Kochi, Hyderabad, and Goa.
Apart from the increase in non-metro connectivity, the geographical location of Bengaluru and the growing economy of the State of Karnataka has helped in positioning BLR as the major aviation gateway of South and Central India. BLR Airport offers a wide catchment area of 23 cities within a convenient flying time of one hour and 15 minutes. This, coupled with growth in non-metro connectivity, has helped in building the transfer traffic market at BLR Airport. The transfer traffic flow has helped in strengthening loads on other domestic and international routes as well. Moreover, with this catchment area serving a population of – 256 million people (i.e., one fifth of India’s population), BLR Airport is leading the growth story of the region.
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To create an exceptional travel experience for transit passengers, BLR Airport offers world-class infrastructure and facilities. Also, passengers can take advantage of a wide array of shopping, dining, and unwinding options at the airport, including excellent service and the best of hospitality at the newly revamped lounges and Transit Hotel during their stopover. In addition, to cater to growing transfer numbers, BLR Airport has further augmented two of its existing transfer zones by creating an additional lane for smooth transfer of passengers. With the opening of Terminal 2, we expect to add to our transfer experience and look forward to developing BLR Airport as the new gateway to India.