Austrian reports negative trend in passenger volumes



3 September 2009


The negative trend currently impacting the entire aviation industry continued at the Austrian Airlines Group in February. Despite significantly reduced capacities (-14.2% measured in ASK) and the implementation of extensive marketing measures, it proved impossible to compensate for the fall in demand. The load factor stood at 69.1%, 3.0 percentage points lower than 2008.

The Group carried around 603,000 passengers on its scheduled and charter services in February, or 16.4% lower than the previous year. Demand is traditionally very low in February. When adjusted to take into account the leap day last year, the fall was around 13%. Cumulatively, the fall in passenger volume in the first two months of the year was –14.8%, while the overall load factor stood at 67.1%, 3.8 percentage points below the figure for last year.

Short- and medium-haul segment
The Austrian Airlines Group suffered a 15.3% fall in passenger volume in this segment in February 2009 when compared to February 2008. Capacity (ASK) in the short- and medium-haul segment overall was reduced by 7.0%. The passenger load factor on short- and medium-haul routes was 61.0%, 3.4 percentage points below the figure for the comparable period in 2008.

Cumulatively, passenger figures were 14.3% down on the previous year, while the load factor in this segment fell by 3.7 percentage points to 59.2%.

Long-haul segment
In February, thanks to significantly reduced capacity compared to the previous year (-24.9% ASK) following the cancellation of the Chicago and Mumbai routes and seasonal reductions, passenger volume also fell, by 28.9%. As a result, the passenger load factor could be kept relatively stable at 77.5%, just 1.1 percentage points down on the previous year.

In the first two months of the year, meanwhile, passenger volume fell by 24.0% due to reduced capacity (-18.3% ASK). The passenger load factor was 74.9% (-3.4 percentage points down on the previous year).

Charter segment
3.7% more passengers were carried in the first two months of the year than in the same period in 2008. The passenger load factor was 76.8%, just 0.4 percentage points below the figure for last year.


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