Franco-Dutch airline Air France-KLM on Monday reported increases in passenger traffic, capacity and load factor for the month of December mainly on strong growth in Europe and Americas. Meanwhile, cargo traffic and load factor were virtually stable. Passenger traffic for the month of December grew 7.5 percent to 17.97 billion revenue pax-kilometers, or RPKs, from 16.71 billion RPKs in the prior year.
In order to facilitate year-on-year comparisons, passenger traffic data since November 2011 is restated to include the business of Martinair, the company said.
Capacity measured in available seat-kilometers, or ASKs, was up 6.3 percent to 22.05 billion ASKs from 20.75 billion ASKs a year ago. Load factor for the month increased one point to 81.5 percent from 80.5 percent last year.
The number of passengers stood at 6.11 million, up 11.7 percent from 5.47 million a year earlier. Unit revenue per available seat kilometre, or RASK, excluding currency was stable relative to last year.
The company noted that activity in December 2010 was affected by severe weather conditions in Europe and the United States that led to the cancellation of 5,100 flights, flattering the year-on-year comparison.
The European network, including France, recorded a 14.8 percent rise in traffic and a 14.9 percent increase in capacity, while load factor declined 0.1 points to 71 percent. The European network was the most affected by the severe weather December 2010, contributing to the sharp year on year rise.
On the Americas network traffic and capacity rose 9 percent and 6.7 percent respectively, driven mainly by Latin America. The load factor gained 1.8 point to 86.7 percent.
In the Asia network, traffic rose 4 percent and capacity grew 3.2 percent leading to a 0.7 point rise in load factor to 83 percent. However Japanese activity has yet to recover to the levels prior to last year's earthquake and tsunami, the company noted.
Traffic on the Africa and Middle East network grew 5.1 percent and capacity edged up 0.8 percent. The load factor gained 3.4 points to 82.1 percent. The Africa network continues to recover, but the Middle East remains affected by political instability.
Caribbean and Indian Ocean network recorded a 3.6 percent rise in traffic and 4.1 percent rise in capacity. The load factor was 83.3 percent, down 0.4 points.
In December, cargo traffic edged down 0.3 percent to 932 million revenue tonne-km, while capacity edged up 0.1 percent to 1.37 billion available tonne-km. The load factor dropped 0.3 points to 68.1 percent.