Passenger Demand Growth Hits Five-Year Peak in January

Published on : Saturday, March 11, 2017

iataThe International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced global passenger traffic results for January 2017 showing demand (revenue passenger kilometers or RPKs) rose 9.6% compared to January 2016. This was the strongest increase in more than five years. Results were positively affected by traffic associated with the Lunar New Year celebrations, which occurred in January this year, compared to February in 2016. IATA estimates the holiday-related travel contributed up to one-half a percentage point in extra demand growth. January capacity rose 8.0%, and load factor climbed 1.2 percentage points to 80.2%.

 

“2017 is off to a very strong start, with demand at levels not seen since 2011. This is supported by the upturn in the global economic cycle and a return to a more normal environment after the terrorism and political ‘shock’ events seen in early 2016,” said Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s Director General and CEO.

 

International Passenger Markets

JANUARY 2017 (% YEAR-ON-YEAR) WORLD SHARE1 RPK ASK PLF (%-PT)​2 PLF (LEVEL)​3
Total Market 100.0% 9.6% 8.0% 1.2% 80.2%
Africa 2.2% 5.2% 3.9% 0.9% 70.1%
Asia Pacific 32.9% 14.3% 11.1% ​2.2% ​81.5%
Europe 26.4​% 8.4% 7.0% ​1.0% 79.4%
Latin America 5.2% ​4.9% 3.7% ​0.9% ​83.2%
Middle East ​​9.6% 13.5% 11.2% ​1.6% ​79.4%
North America 23.7% 3.4% ​4.1% ​-0.5% 80.0%

 

​1. % of industry RPKs in 2016
2. Year-on-year change in load factor
3. Load factor level

 

January international passenger traffic surged 9.3% compared to the year-ago period. Capacity rose 7.5% and load factor climbed 1.3 percentage point to 80.3%. All regions recorded year-over-year increases in demand led by the Middle East and Asia Pacific.

 

Domestic Passenger Markets

Domestic air travel climbed 9.9% in January year-on-year. All markets except Brazil showed growth, paced by double-digit increases in China, India and Russia. Capacity increased 8.7% and load factor was 80.1%, up 0.9% percentage points.

 JANUARY 2017 (% YEAR-ON-YEAR) WORLD SHARE1 RPK ASK PLF (%-PT)​2 PLF (LEVEL)​3
Domestic 36.3% 9.9% 8.7% 0.9​% 80.1%
Dom. Australia (4) 1.0% 1.1% -0.4% ​1.2% 77.3%
Dom. Brazil (4) 1.2% -2.0% -2.8% 0.7% ​83.8%
Dom. China P.R. (4) 8.7​% 23.2% 18.5% ​3.2% 83.2%
Dom. India (4) 1.3% 26.6% 20.9% ​3.9% ​88.2%
Dom. Japan (4) ​​1.1% 3.5% 1.3% ​1.4% ​65.2%
Dom .Russian Fed (4) 1.3% 15.4% ​16.6% -0.7​% ​71.6%
​Dom. USA (4) 14.9%​ ​3.5% ​4.7% ​-0.9% 80.0%​

 

(1) % of industry RPKs in 2016
(2) Year-on-year change in load factor
(3) Load factor level

 

The Bottom Line:

“Aviation is the business of freedom. Air travel liberates people to lead better lives and creates greater economic opportunity for all by bringing people closer to trade and markets. Governments have a responsibility to secure their borders. They must also preserve the enormous economic and social benefits provided by borders that are open to trade and travel,

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