Middle Eastern carriers posted an 11% demand increase in June compared to the same month last year. This was a sharp turnaround from the flat traffic growth in May, which was partly attributable to the timing of Ramadan between the two years.
Results were also affected by unfavorable developments in the year-ago period, including the ban on large portable electronic devices, as well as the travel restrictions imposed by the US for visitors from certain Middle East and African countries.
Capacity rose 8% and load factor climbed 1.9 percentage points to 71.0%.
IATA’s global passenger traffic results for June show that demand (measured in total revenue passenger kilometers or RPKs) rose by 7.8% compared to June 2017.
This was up from 6% year-over-year growth recorded in both May and April. June capacity (available seat kilometers or ASKs) increased by 6.5%, and load factor rose 1 percentage point to 82.8%.
The first six months of 2018 produced demand growth of 7%, a strong performance, but down from 8.3% growth recorded in the first half of 2017.
Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s Director General and CEO said: “The first half of 2018 concluded with another month of above-trend demand growth, which is a good indicator for the peak summer travel season in the northern hemisphere.
“But the looming prospect of a global trade war is casting a long shadow. Additionally, rising cost inputs—fuel prices have soared by approximately 60% over the past year—are reducing the stimulus of lower fares,”