2019 starts on a positive note for passenger demand

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced global passenger traffic results for January 2019 showing traffic (revenue passenger kilometres or RPKs) rose 6.5% compared to January 2018. This was the fastest growth in six months. January capacity (available seat kilometres or ASKs) rose 6.4%, and load factor inched up 0.1 percentage point to 79.6%. International passenger demand rose 6.0% in January compared to the same month last year, which was up from a 5.3% rise in December year-over-year. Asia-Pacific carriers recorded a demand increase of 7.1% compared to January 2018, solidly above the 5.0% growth in December. Capacity rose 5.1%, and load factor surged 1.5 percentage points to 81.7%, second highest among the regions. Healthy regional growth is being underpinned by rising incomes and an increase in the number of airport pairs.