The FINANCIAL -- In total 96,981 passengers were served by Tbilisi International Airport in November 2013. With almost 20% Turkish airlines tops the list of the most popular airline companies operating in Georgia. Ukraine International Airlines, Georgian Airways and Pegasus share the largest number of passengers. With 19% Turkey is the most popular destination for Georgians.
Passenger numbers from and to Kiev have decreased by 3% from November to October due to the political instability and street demonstrations in Kiev. The Tbilisi-Kiev flight made up 17% from the total number in October, while in November the figure amounted to 14%.
“The political instability inside Kiev and its unpredictability makes our passengers cautious. After police broke up demonstrators by force many passengers cancelled their flights to Kiev,” said Ella Karapetyan, Director at Travel Agency BusinessTravelCom.
There were 167 flights to and from Istanbul. In November 2013 flight numbers to and from Kiev, the second most popular destination for Georgians, equalled those of Moscow. The total number of flights to both directions was 60. The number of arrivals and departures to Kiev was 15,588, and to Moscow - 10,698.
There are two airline companies offering charter flights to Moscow: Siberia Airlines and Georgian Airways.
According to the officials from TAV Georgia, Tbilisi International Airport is negotiating with Aeroflot, Russian airlines to set up regular flights between the two countries.
With 9,182 passengers Pegasus is the top fourth air company presented in Georgia. Pegasus served 110,000 passengers in 2012. The company expects to have a 4% increase of passengers.
“One of our main goals is to add new destinations. This year we added flights to Barcelona, Athens and Moscow which are all popular with Georgian passengers,” said Levan Elizbarashvili, Director at the Georgian Avia Service Agency (GASA), general commercial agent of Pegasus Airlines to Georgia.
In his words, Antalya remains the leading destination for Georgians. Italy and Spain follow after it.
Another Turkish company, Atlas Jet, entered the Georgian market in October 2013. In November the company served 2,754 passengers.
“The total number of passengers served by Tbilisi International Airport from January to November was 1,276,882. With 71,673 February showed the smallest number of passengers. Meanwhile August has beaten the record for the year, serving 166,865 passengers,” said Alexander Gachechiladze, Head of the Transportation Department at the Georgian Civil Aviation Agency (GCAA).
According to the GCAA, Turkish Airlines is the dominant air company with the largest number of passengers. Till October 2013 it served 166,000 passengers, Georgian Airways is the second most popular airline with 110,000 passengers. It is followed by Ukraine International Airlines - with 92,000; Pegasus served 72,000 passengers; Siberia Airlines - 49,000; Belavia - 48,000; and Qatar Airways - 31,000.
There are 24 foreign and one national airline companies offering regular flights from Georgia.