Singapore Changi Airport consolidates performance in Q2 2023

Exterior view of Singapore Changi Airport
Photo Credit: Singapore Changi Airport

Singapore Changi Airport achieved a significant post-pandemic milestone in June 2023. Amidst the challenges brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic, the airport proudly handled 5.12 million passenger movements during the month.

This marked the first time since January 2020 that the airport surpassed five million passengers in a single month.

Notably, this figure accounted for 88% of the passenger movements recorded in June 2019, indicating a remarkable recovery in the aviation sector.

Additionally, aircraft movements also saw a marked resurgence, with 27,500 landings and take-offs recorded in June 2023, amounting to 88% of the level seen in June 2019.

A steady recovery in Quarter 2

On a quarterly basis, the second quarter of 2023 showcased further encouraging statistics for Changi Airport. From April to June 2023, the airport handled a total of 14.6 million passenger movements, equivalent to 87% of what was registered during the same period in 2019.

Aircraft movements also demonstrated a steady recovery, reaching 81,400 or 86% when compared to the corresponding quarter in 2019. These figures are a testament to the airport’s resilience and its ability to bounce back amidst challenging circumstances.

The Singapore Changi airport control tower.
George Tan from Singapore, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Key traffic markets

Changi Airport’s top five traffic markets during the second quarter of 2023 were Australia, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Thailand.

Notably, passenger traffic to and from Northeast Asia exhibited significant improvement, rising from approximately 50% of pre-Covid levels in January 2023 to an impressive 75% by June 2023.

This upward trajectory signifies the gradual revival of air travel in the region and is a positive indicator for the aviation industry.

Emerging airfreight markets

The airfreight sector, like passenger traffic, also experienced some challenges during this period. From April to June 2023, airfreight throughput totaled 418,000 tonnes, indicating a year-on-year decline of 10.8%.

This reduction in air cargo demand can be attributed to softening demand amid inflationary pressures. However, despite the challenges, Changi Airport has identified promising emerging markets for airfreight.

Among its top five air cargo markets, India has emerged as a notable contender for two consecutive quarters since the start of 2023, signaling its increasing significance in the global airfreight landscape.

Executive Vice President’s outlook

Mr. Lim Ching Kiat, the Executive Vice President for Air Hub and Cargo Development at Changi Airport Group, expressed his satisfaction with the airport’s progress.

He stated, “Changi Airport continues to witness steady growth in passenger traffic, with passenger movements inching closer to 90% of 2019 levels as we close the second quarter. We are pleased to have crossed the five-million mark again in June with the mid-year holiday season.”

Mr. Lim was also pleased with the airport’s growing connectivity, especially to more points in Southeast Asia and China, which are expected to be strengthened in the second half of the year.

Future prospects for Singapore Changi

Looking ahead, Changi Airport’s future prospects appear promising, with the airport attracting more airlines and expanding its network.

In the second quarter of 2023, IndiGo, a prominent Indian airline, launched twice-weekly passenger services to Bhubaneswar, becoming Changi Airport’s first city link to India‘s eastern state of Odisha and its 17th link to India as a whole.

Additionally, Air Canada announced its plans to resume its Vancouver-Singapore service in April 2024, marking its return to Changi Airport after more than three decades of absence.

As of 1st July, Changi Airport hosts an impressive roster of 99 airlines operating over 6,300 weekly scheduled flights. This extensive network connects Singapore to an astounding 148 cities in 49 countries and territories worldwide, solidifying Changi Airport’s status as a truly global aviation hub.

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