Air travel demand up in Sept.
Global passenger traffic jumped in September this year, with a healthy mix coming from domestic and international flights, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) said.
IATA noted that demand, measured in terms of revenue passenger kilometers, rose 7 percent in September, the strongest year-on-year increase in the last seven months. Capacity was also up 6.6 percent and load factor, a measure of flight utilization, was 0.3 percentage points higher to 81.1 percent.
“September’s growth in passenger demand was healthy. Importantly, this rebound from an August weakness suggests that travel demand is showing its resilience in the aftermath of terror attacks,” Alexandre de Juniac, IATA Director General and CEO, said in a statement.
“Overall, the industry is still vulnerable to being buffeted by rising geopolitical tensions, protectionist political agendas and weak economic fundamentals. This will still be a good year for the airline industry’s performance, but our profitability will continue to be hard-won.”
According to IATA, international demand was up 6.9 percent in September, led by growth in the Middle East and Asia Pacific.
IATA said Asia Pacific airlines saw traffic rise 8.6 percent while capacity was up 7.7 percent. Load factor within the region was higher by 0.7 percentage points to 77.9 percent.
Middle East carriers, meanwhile, surged 11.5 percent. IATA noted capacity was also up significantly, or by 13.8 percent, causing load factor to slip 1.5 percentage points to 73.9 percent.
All other regions also ended September higher. Total international capacity was up 7.2 percent while load factor was down 0.2 percentage points to 80.4 percent.
IATA added domestic demand recorded a 7.2 percent increase in September, better than the 4.1 percent year-on-year growth in August.
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