The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has reported global passenger traffic data for August 2018 showing that demand (measured in total revenue passenger kilometers or RPKs) climbed 6.4 per cent compared to the year-ago period.
This was slightly above the 6.1 per cent annual increase for July. August capacity (available seat kilometers or ASKs) increased by 5.5 per cent, and load factor climbed 0.7 per cent percentage point to 85.3 per cent, which was the highest for any month since at least 1990.
“The industry experienced continued strong traffic growth in August, putting the cap on a very good peak travel season. The all-time record load factor reflects that airlines are maximizing the efficiency of their assets at a time of rising fuel prices and other costs that are limiting the opportunities for low fare stimulation,” said IATA’s director general and chief executive officer, Alexandre de Juniac.
August international passenger demand rose 5.6 per cent compared to August 2017, in line with 5.5 per cent year-over-year growth achieved in July. All regions recorded increases, led by airlines in the Asia-Pacific region. Capacity climbed 5.1 per cent, and load factor edged up 0.4 percentage point to 85 per cent.
Demand for domestic travel climbed 7.7 per cent in August compared to August 2017, up from the 7.2 per cent growth recorded in July. Capacity rose 6.2 per cent and load factor increased 1.2 percentage points to 85.7 per cent. All markets reported demand increases albeit with wide variation.