Forecasting air passenger traffic volume: evaluating time series models in long-term forecasting of Kuwait air passenger data

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Abstract

Accurate estimation of air transport demand is vital for airlines, related aviation companies, and government agencies. For example, both short-term and long-term business plans of airlines require accurate forecasting of future air traffic flows. This study aims to forecast the volume of air passengers in Kuwait International Airport (KIA), which is in the state of Kuwait. Using monthly air traffic volume data between January 2012 and December 2018, this study focuses on the modelling and forecasting the number of air passengers in KIA. A wide range of time series forecasting models are considered in this research, including autoregressive-integrated-moving average model (ARIMA), exponential smoothing with errors term (ETS), Holt-Winters exponential smoothing, neural network autoregression (NNAR), hybrid and Bayesian structural time series (BSTS), and a hybrid model. The forecasting performance of these models are compared using multiple train-test splits where the models are fitted on the training sets and evaluated on the test sets. The mean absolute percentage error (MAPE) is used to compare the performance of various models. Empirical analysis suggests that the BSTS model compares favorably against the other time series models in its ability to forecast complex time series. The BSTS model may be applied to study other complex time series forecasting problems with irregularity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)69-89
Number of pages21
JournalAdvances and Applications in Statistics
Volume70
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2021

Keywords

  • air traffic volume forecast
  • seasonal ARIMA
  • seasonal exponential smoothing
  • neural networks
  • hybrid method
  • Kuwait International Airport

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