According to PTI, in May 2019, before the Covid-19 pandemic impacted the global aviation sector, merely two of the top 20 international air travel routes from India were to Dubai.
“International air travel is guided by bilateral rights. In case of Dubai, (the number of) Emirates flights are back (to the pre-pandemic level) but that is not the case with every other region. This made Dubai climb up the list faster than others,” PTI reported Ameya Joshi, aviation analyst and founder of aviation blog “Network Thoughts” as saying.
The busiest international air travel route from India in May 2019 was Kolkata-Dhaka with 301 flights, as per the data mentioned. However, the busiest international route in India in May 2022 was Mumbai-Dubai with 406 flights.
Not just that, the second busiest international route in May 2022 was Delhi-Dubai with 332 flights.
There were 167, 152, 136, 133 and 131 flights on the Cochin-Dubai, Hyderabad-Dubai, Chennai-Dubai, Bengaluru-Dubai and Calicut-Dubai routes in May 2022 respectively, the data showed. These seven routes to the city in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) were among the top 20 international air travel routes connecting India in May 2022, it mentioned.
In comparison, there were just two Dubai routes — Mumbai-Dubai (252 flights) and Delhi-Dubai (218 flights) — among the top 20 routes in May 2019, it noted.
Meanwhile, according to Cirium’s data, while there were four India-Kuala Lumpur routes among the top 20 routes in May 2019, there was none in May 2022.
Emirates was one of the first airlines to deploy full capacity on routes to India, taking a lot of traffic to the European Union, Russia and North America, said Joshi.
Covid-19 had significantly curtailed international travel since the beginning of 2020 to the beginning of this year. Its impact is now receding and airlines across the world have largely resumed their international flights.
(With inputs from PTI)