The International Air Transport Association (IATA) recently announced global passenger traffic results for September showing demand growth of 5.3 percent (measured in revenue passenger kilometers or RPKs) over September 2013.
According to IATA, this continues the positive growth trend for passenger demand even though the performance was slightly below the August year-over-year rise of 6.3 percent. September capacity rose 5.1 percent and load factor rose 0.2 percentage points to 80.3 percent.
“Overall, demand for passenger travel is growing in line with expectations. We saw, however, some shifting of the sources of that growth in September, largely driven by economic factors. The strengthening of the US and Asian economies was offset by weakness in Europe and Latin America,” said Tony Tyler, IATA’s director general and CEO.
“The three big stories in September were Europe, Russia and India,” said Mr. Tyler.
– European airlines reported 3.9 percent growth for international demand, a significant drop from the seven percent reported in August indicating the impact of the Air France crew strike and a general weakening of European economic prospects.
– Year-on-year growth for Russian domestic demand fell to 5.6 percent in September from 10.1 percent in August. The impact of price stimulus wore-off and the weakness revealed could be a first indicator of the economic impact of the Russia-Ukraine crisis
– Indian domestic travel spiked with a 26.3 percent growth in September (several times the 7.6 percent growth recorded in August) as a result of price stimulation.
IATA anticipates that airlines will deliver an $18.0 billion net profit on revenues of $746 billion for a 2.4 percent net profit margin in 2014. The association will update this estimate and take a first look at 2015 profitability on 10 December at its Global Media Day in Geneva.