Global air passenger traffic results for May 2018, showed that demand, measured in revenue passenger kilometers (RPK), rose by 6.1 percent compared to the same month in 2017, according to the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
This was a slight pickup from 6 percent year-over-year growth for April 2018. Capacity climbed by 5.9 percent and load factor rose 0.1 percentage point to 80.1 percent.
“May was another solid month in terms of demand growth. As had been expected, we saw some moderation, as rising airline costs are reducing the stimulus from lower airfares,” said IATA Director General and CEO Alexandre de Juniac.
In particular, jet fuel prices are expected to be up nearly 26 percent this year compared to 2017. “Nevertheless, the record load factor for the month signifies that demand for air connectivity is strong,” he added.
International passenger traffic demand rose 5.8 percent, which is up from 4.6 percent growth in April. Total capacity climbed 5.4 percent, with load factor rising by 0.3 percentage point to 78.7 percent.
European carriers’ May demand climbed by 6.2 percent over May 2017, well above the 3.4 percent year-over-year growth recorded in April. Capacity rose by 5.1 percent and load factor was up 0.8 percentage point to 83.5 percent.
Middle East carriers’ May demand growth slowed to 0.8 percent compared to a year ago, from 2.9 percent annual growth recorded in April.
North American airlines’ traffic rose 4.9 percent in May compared to May 2017, a strong rebound from 0.9 percent annual growth in April.
Moreover, Latin American airlines experienced a 7.5 percent increase in traffic in May compared to the same month last year, while African airlines’ traffic rose 3.8 percent in May, which was an 8-month low.