Singapore Changi Airport has continued to see strong performance across source markets with the strongest growth in North America, Southwest Pacific and Europe. The first quarter saw 13 million passenger movements and 74,000 aircraft movements with the top five markets being Australia, India, Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand. Passenger flows to and from Greater China which comprises mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Macau also showed strong recovery with traffic doubling compared to the previous quarter. This is attributed to the progressive resumption of scheduled passenger services.
Airfreight movements saw a decline of 9% year-on-year in the first quarter this year. Air cargo demand remained soft in the first two months of the year, amid global economic uncertainty and inflationary pressures. Changi’s top five air cargo markets include Australia, China, Hong Kong, India and the United States of America.
The airport handled 4.63 million passenger movements in March 2023. This is over 82% of its pre-Covid traffic in March 2019 levels and also the first time since the pandemic it has crossed 80%. Landings and take offs in March 2023 totalled 26,000. Aircraft movements were about 81% of March 2019 levels, maintaining what was recorded for the same period last year. 152,000 tones of airfreight throughput maintained what was recorded for the same period last year.
Changi Airport welcomed Air Macau. Firefly launched flights between Changi Airport and Penang operating daily flights on a Boeing 737-800 adding to existing flights from Seletar Airport to Subang on the ATR 72-500. Ethiopian Airlines resumed Singapore – Addis Ababa flights while Scoot resumed services to Qingdao. Chongqing Airlines, Hebei Airlines, Guangxi Beibu Gulf Airlines and Hainan Airlines resumed service to Singapore.
As at 1 April 2023, 102 airlines operate over 6,000 weekly scheduled flights at Changi Airport, connecting Singapore to 145 cities in 49 countries and territories worldwide. Singapore Changi Airport was voted World’s Best Airport at the 2023 World Airport Awards making a return to the top award it has previously maintained until the pandemic.
20 new stores and F&B concepts opened at Changi’s four terminals in the first quarter. WOKE Ramen open in Terminal 1 public area, Noyah La Maison in Terminal 3 public are, and Crystal Jade Go in Terminal 4 transit and Penang Culture in T1 public and Bee Cheng Hiang in T4 public and transit. T3 welcomed a new bouldering play attraction at its basement levels, Climb@T3.
In the transit area, Balenciaga opened a full-fledged outlet in Terminal 1 while Tiffany & Co returned to Changi Airport T1. Almost all the outlets in T4 are now open including Heavenly Wang, Bengawan Solo, Old Chang Kee and iStudio.
At Jewel Changi Airport, new outlets that opened in the quarter include ABC Cooking Studio, Amaris, Black by Blue Brave, Fossil, Guardian, Hurley, Maison Margiela, The Mineral Boutique, The Wonder Store, and Watches of Switzerland.
24 Awards given out in Changi Airline Awards 2023
Changi Airport Group celebrated a year of strong air traffic recovery and revival of travel at the Changi Airline Awards 2023 at Shangri-La Singapore. The annual event was attended by over 150 representatives from about 70 airlines. The 16th edition of the annual event gave out 24 awards in six award categories to airline that made the most significant contribution to the passenger and airfreight traffic at Changi Airport in 2022.
Singapore Airlines topped the list as airline with the highest passenger movements and cargo volume for 2022. Other airlines on the list of top airlines by passenger movements in order include Scoot, Jetstar Asia, AirAsia, and Qantas Airways. Top cargo carriage airlines include FedEx Express, China Airlines, Aerologic and Scoot after Singapore Airlines.
The partner of the year awards was presented to SIA. It played a crucial role in driving passenger traffic recovery at Changi Airport last year. SIA steadily recovered its passenger flight network services with the launch of the Vaccinated Travel Framework in April 2022 with passenger traffic reaching close to 70% of pre-Covid-19 levels by the end of the year. SIA also partnered CAG and the Singapore Tourism Board to launch campaigns to encourage travel and relaunched the Free Singapore Tour.
SIA partnered DHL Express to reinforce Singapore’s status as a critical air cargo and e-commerce logistics hub. Since August 2022, the airline has been operating DHL Express B777 freighters to the United States of America via North Asia points. This is also the first time Changi had received delivery of a home-based freighter aircraft in more than a decade.
Changi Airport Group is working on transforming the passenger journey through Changi Airport into a passport-less one, with the first trials targetted for June 2023 at Terminal 3, and airlines to be progressively onboarded. Tenders for construction will be called next year for the Terminal 5 development with the groundbreaking to take place in 2025.
“In the near-term before Terminal 5’s opening, we will be working on enhancements to expand our capacity as we pursue the next phase of growth. There are upcoming plans to redesign Terminal 1’s Arrival Immigration Halls. Besides providing a more spacious hall, we are also working with ICA (Immigration and Checkpoints Authority) to increase the number of automated lanes from 12 to over 40 at each hall. When completed around 2025, the new arrival immigration halls will have 60% more queue holding capacity, and 40% more throughput.”Mr Lee Seow Hiang, Chief Executive Officer of Changi Airport Group.