Changi Airport handles more passengers in March but first quarter traffic down 0.9%

SINGAPORE - Changi Airport handled fewer passengers in the first three months of this year compared with the same period last year, although year-on-year traffic in March was higher.

The airport handled 4.54 million passengers last month, 0.9 per cent higher than a year ago.

For the January to March quarter though traffic was down 0.9 per cent, to 13.1 million.

Aircraft movements in the three months dipped by 2.5 per cent to 84,060 take offs and landings.

Overall, traffic was weaker across most regions except for to and from South Asia, Changi Airport Group said on Monday.

To boost traffic numbers, the airport has announced various initiatives including a decision to reduce the passenger service fee for transit travellers from $9 now to $3 in July.

Airlines will also continue to received discounts for aircraft parking and landing, as well as aerobridge charges.

To arrest the dip in traffic, Changi is working with airlines to encourage them to add services or start new flights.

Oman Air commenced its daily Muscat-Singapore-Kuala Lumpur service on March 29 while Xiamen Airlines now offers daily non-stop services to both Fuzhou and Hangzhou - located along China's south-eastern coast - replacing the previous daily Hangzhou-Fuzhou-Singapore service.

Tigerair has also commenced flights to the southern Chinese cities of Guilin and Nanning.

To continually improve the airport's food and beverage offerings, Italian café operator Culto Caffe will open its first outlet in Singapore, at the transit area of Terminal 1 later this month.

At T3, Dunkin Donuts and Hong Kong Sheng Kee Desserts have opened new outlets.