ERA reports encouraging growth

As the members of the European Regions Airline Association (ERA) gather at the association’s annual General Assembly in Barcelona, ERA’s member airlines are reporting very healthy growth for the first six months of 2006.Scheduled passenger traffic was up an encouraging 8.2% compared to the first half of 2005.

Capacity levels have also been growing on ERA member airlines, with seat numbers up 5.1% and available seat kilometres (ASKs) up 5.9%  in the first six months of this year when compared to the same period in 2005.

Rising passenger demand unsurprisingly led to increases in average scheduled passenger load factors (PLFs) for the first half of 2006,  with an average PLF of 62.2% being achieved (compared to a then-record 59.8% in 2005). The 62.2% figure therefore represents a new record high for the period.

The first-half results for 2006 also reveal that the average sector distance for an ERA member airline stands at 546 kilometres. The average sector time - identical to 2005 - stands at 74 minutes.

Mike Ambrose, director general of ERA, says: “We have been talking all year of how the intra-European aviation industry has moved from recovery to progress and these figures prove the point perfectly.”