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Friday, 04 May, 2018, 09 : 30 AM [IST]

Except Middle East, all regions post record load factors in Q1: IATA

According to the global passenger traffic results for March 2018 by the International Air Transport Association (IATA), demand (measured in revenue passenger kilometers, or RPKs) rose 9.5%, compared to the same month a year ago. This is the fastest pace of growth in 12 months, on the backdrop of strong economics and business confidence. Capacity (available seat kilometers, or ASKs) grew 6.4% and load factor climbed 2.3 percentage points to 82.4%, which set a record for the month, following on the record set in February. All regions except for the Middle East posted record load factors.

The international passenger demand for March rose 10.6% compared to March 2017, which was up from 7.4% year-over-year growth recorded in February. All regions showed strong increases. Total capacity climbed 6.6%, and load factor improved 2.9 percentage points to 81.5%.

Traffic for airlines in Asia-Pacific soared 11.6% in March, compared to the year-ago period. Passenger traffic is continuing to trend upwards, supported by strong regional economic growth and ongoing expansion in the number of airport-pair options for travellers. Capacity increased 8.2%, and load factor rose 2.5 percentage points to 80.9%.

"Demand for air travel remains strong, supported by the comparatively healthy economic backdrop and business confidence levels. But rising cost inputs—particularly fuel prices—suggest that any demand boosts from lower fares will moderate going into the second quarter," said Alexandre de Juniac, Director General and CEO, IATA. 

"The strong first quarter provides healthy momentum heading into the peak travel period in the Northern Hemisphere. Benign economic conditions are supporting—and being supported by—good demand for air travel. It’s a mutually-beneficial effect that smart governments recognize and encourage, by embracing affordable, quality aviation infrastructure and reasonable commercial regulation. But we need to deliver that message every day. The setback to modernizing air traffic management in the US, and a proposal to stop construction of the new airport in Mexico, are reminders of that fact," said de Juniac.

 
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