International Air Passenger Traffic

South Korea’s October international air passenger traffic reached a new high for the month, partly on a growing number of South Koreans heading to tourist destinations in Southeast Asian countries and China, the government said Tuesday.

The number of international air passengers to and from South Korea reached 3.83 million last month, up 6.4 percent from a year earlier, according to the Ministry of Land, Transport and Maritime Affairs.

“The figure is the highest for October in the country’s history,” it said in a press release.

The number of passengers traveling to and from Southeast Asian countries jumped 16 percent on-year to over 1.16 million with the number of people going to and from Europe also surging 9.8 percent to some 263,000.

Passengers to and from China rose 4.5 percent to just over 902,000, but those to and from Japan and the United States dropped 1.8 percent and 2.1 percent, respectively, to 984,000 and 321,000.

Of the total, 66.8 percent of all international passengers used flights offered by South Korean airlines with the market share of the country’s five budget carriers nearly doubling from 2.5 percent a year ago to 4.7 percent, according to the ministry.

Gains by the low-cost carriers were also seen in the domestic market where their joint market share increased 7 percentage points from the same period last year to 42.2 percent while the total number of domestic passengers grew 5.5 percent to 2.03 million.

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