New Delhi, Sep 8: For the first time ever, worldwide annual air passenger numbers have exceeded four billion in a 12-month period. Indians constituted the world's third largest air travelers, as per the record released by International Air Transport Association (IATA), 2017 stating the ranking of air passengers by nationality.
According to a the report from IATA, 2017 was a record year for travel, thanks in large part to broad-based improvements in global economic conditions and lower average airfares.
The surge was also likely helped along by the fact that airlines connected a record number of cities worldwide, providing service to more than 20,000 city pairs in 2017, according to IATA. That figure is more than double the level it was in 1995.
The IATA data also revealed that U.S. citizens continue to be the world's most frequent fliers. About 632 million Americans flew on commercial airline flights last year, representing 18.6 percent of all passengers.
The U.S. had the highest number of passengers in 2017, followed by China at 555 million, India at 161.5 million, the U.K. at 147 million, and Germany at 114.4 million.