Finnair’s passenger volume reached a new monthly record in June as the carrier welcomed more than 1.2 million across its network.
The Helsinki-based airline said this was a 12.8 per cent uptick on the same month in 2017 and it was driven by Asian traffic (+15.5 per cent), European traffic (+12.4 per cent), North America traffic (+18.2 per cent) and domestic traffic (+9.9 per cent).
Overall capacity measured in available seat kilometres (ASK) increased in June by 16.4 per cent year-on-year (YOY) and traffic measured in revenue passenger kilometres (RPKs) grew less, by 14.5 per cent. The high ASK growth rate was reflected in the passenger load factor (PLF), which decreased YOY by 1.4 points to 85.4 per cent.
In June 48 per cent of Finnair’s ASKs were in Asian traffic, 41 per cent on European routes and the rest in North American and domestic traffic.
Finnair’s long-haul capacity has been increased by the A350 aircraft with enlarged capacity, which have been introduced after the reference period.
The ASK growth in Asian traffic was 16.4 per cent and was mainly directed at frequency additions to Tokyo and Bangkok and to the new route opening to Nanjing. In North American traffic ASKs increased by 11.7 per cent, mostly due to additional frequencies to Chicago.
The 18 per cent ASK growth in European traffic derived from the increase in the narrowbody fleet size YOY and the additional seating capacity added to some of the existing narrow-body aircraft.
Finnair’s capacity growth was directed at added frequencies to several destinations, especially to Tallinn, Bergen, Berlin, Gdansk, St Petersburg and Moscow. Flights to a new destination Stuttgart began at the end of April.
Finnair’s chief financial officer, Pekka Vähähyyppä said: “During the past quarter, we made monthly records in the number of carried passengers and in several other growth figures. Because of the strong capacity growth, our passenger load factor weakened, and Q2 RASK was below corresponding period as we expected.”