Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi, India, has reported reaching the one million international passenger mark in October since the reopening of airport services on 25 May following the two-month-long Covid-19 lockdown.

The airport is connected with 66 international destinations through Vande Bharat Mission flights.

According to Delhi International Airport Ltd (DIAL) officials, the airport saw an increase in inbound passengers from Dubai, Changi (Singapore), Heathrow (London), Bangkok, and Kathmandu airports during the festive month of October.

The airport also handled 1.9 million domestic passengers in October on the back of the festive season, which is 42% of the pre-Covid-19 traffic handled at its domestic terminals.

In the wake of the festive season, airports of Mumbai, Srinagar, Bengaluru, Patna, and Hyderabad remained the top five destinations for domestic travel, DIAL said.

DIAL CEO Videh Kumar Jaipuriar said: “With the recent announcement by the government to permit up to 70% of domestic slots in the coming days, we are hopeful of achieving the pre-Covid-19 levels soon.”

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Last week, Ministry of Civil Aviation Secretary Pradeep Singh Kharola stated that almost 65% of the domestic traffic has reached the pre-pandemic levels.

He also said that in the next two-three months, domestic traffic may return to a normal level.

According to DGCA data released last month, domestic traffic declined 57% year-on-year in October, despite a 33% increase over the month before.

Compared with 67 destinations in pre-Covid-19 times, Delhi airport handled 69 domestic destinations in October.

In a separate development, Rajiv Gandhi International Airport, which is operated by GMR Hyderabad International Airport Limited (GHIAL) in Hyderabad, handled more than three million domestic passengers from the day of resumption until 23 November 2020.

Until 30 September, the airport recorded 1.2 million domestic passengers.

This month, GHIAL introduced an Internet of Things (IoT) enabled smart baggage trolley system for tracking and maintaining the availability of baggage trolleys in real-time across the airport.

In November, Air India (AI) announced its plans to start non-stop flights between Hyderabad and Chicago airports from January 2021.

This will be the first scheduled service between the US and South India.