The International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced full-year global passenger traffic results for 2019 showing that demand Revenue Passenger Kilometers (RPKs) rose by 4.2 per cent compared to the full year of 2018.
The 2019 result is a slowdown compared to 2018’s annual growth of 7.3per cent and marked the first year since the global financial crisis in 2009 with passenger demand below the long-term trend of around 5.5per cent annual growth.
According to IATA, full-year 2019 capacity climbed 3.4per cent, and the load factor rose 0.7 percentage point to a record high of 82.6per cent. The previous high was 81.9per cent set in 2018. December 2019 RPKs increased 4.5per cent against the same month in 2018. That was an improvement over the 3.3per cent annual growth recorded in November, primarily due to solid demand in North America.
Commenting, IATA’s Director General and CEO, Alexandre de Juniac said “Airlines did well to maintain steady growth last year in the face of a number of challenges. A softer economic backdrop, weak global trade activity, and political and geopolitical tensions took their toll on demand. Astute capacity management, and the effects of the 737 MAX grounding, contributed to another record load factor, helping the industry to manage through weaker demand and improving environmental performance”,