Jiangsu airports report first positive growth of domestic flights


Airports in Jiangsu Province have seized the opportunity of eased COVID-19 restrictions and tourism recovery, coordinating closely with airlines to increase flights to popular tourist destinations. Amid the efforts, the province’s domestic air transportation in August rebounded and exceeded the level before the COVID-19 pandemic for the first time.

Jiangsu’s airports completed 37,000 domestic flights in August, up 0.3 percent year on year and the first positive growth this year. Domestic flights via Nanjing Lukou International Airport, Sunan Shuofang International Airport, Nantong Xingdong Airport, Yancheng Nanyang Airport and Yangzhou Taizhou International Airport were up 3.5 percent, 25.3 percent, 5.8 percent, 19.6 percent and 18.4 percent, respectively.

File photo of Sunan Shuofang International Airport / CFP

The province’s airports handled 4.291 million domestic passengers, 8.9 percentage points higher than before the pandemic. In one-third of cities with airports, the number of monthly outbound passengers was higher than that one year ago.

Reopening of international flights also made smooth progress. The average passenger load factor was 75.9 percent, 0.3 percent higher than before the coronavirus outbreak. The capacity utilization rate reached 95 percent for some popular routes.

As the Civil Aviation Administration of China adjusted the policy, Jiangsu has moved to resume more international flights amid continuous COVID-19 control measures. Currently, the province has resumed 15 international and regional flights, including to destinations of Milan, Manila, Frankfurt, Seoul, Hanoi, Bangkok, Singapore, Vancouver, Osaka and Helsinki. There are now two Nanjing-Milan flights per week, reaching the level before the pandemic.