The country's overall domestic air traffic surged 36% year-on-year (YoY) in May as the airlines carried 1.32 crore passengers during the month, according to the latest data from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA). On a month-on-month basis, domestic air traffic surged by 2.5% as against 1.29 crore passengers in April. 

This is the first aviation data after low-budget carrier Go First halted operations last month amidst insolvency proceedings. Amongst airlines, IndiGo continued to helm its position as a market leader. With Go First halting operations on May 2, IndiGo's market share grew significantly from 55.4% in April to 61.3% in May. The airline carried 81.10 lakh passengers during the month, as against 57.5 lakh passengers.

Tata Group-owned Air India was the second-leading airline in the domestic aviation sector. In May, the airline's market share, which has been in a continuous decline since February this year, improved to 9.4% as against 8.6% in April. Air India had a market share of 9.2%, 8.9% and 8.8% in January, February and March, respectively. With Go First's collapse, Air India also witnessed an increase in passenger travel from 11.13 lakh in April to 12.44 lakh in May.

Vistara also witnessed a marginal increase in its market share by 30 basis points, from 8.7% in April to 9% in May. The airline flew 11.95 lakh passengers in May as against 11.23 lakh passengers in April.

Air Asia also witnessed its market share improving by 30 basis points to 7.9% in May as against 7.6% in April. The airline carried 10.41 lakh passengers as against 9.81 lakh passengers in the same period last month.

Meanwhile, despite being the fifth-largest airline in the domestic aviation sector, SpiceJet's market share continued to shrink amidst the tough competition with the new entrant Akasa Air. SpiceJet's market share shrunk by 40 basis points to 5.4% in May as against 5.8% in April. The airline carried 7.20 lakh passengers in May as against 7.41 passengers in April.

Akasa Air, which debuted in August last year, captured a market share of 4.8% in May, as against 4% in April. The airline carried 6.29 lakh passengers in May as against 5.13 lakh passengers in April.

The passenger load factor for IndiGo, Air India, Air Asia, Vistara and SpiceJet stood at 91.5%, 90.1%, 92.8%, 93.2% and 94.8% respectively.

As many as 566 passenger complaints were received in May.

According to the rating agency ICRA, the country’s aviation industry has picked pace, with air demand rising steadily. It has revised the outlook for the Indian aviation industry to 'stable' from 'negative'. ICRA last month projected domestic passenger traffic growth at 8-13% in FY2024, post the 55-60% expansion in FY2023, to reach 145-150 million, which is much higher than the pre-covid levels.

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