Austrian makes short and medium-haul gains

The Austrian Airlines Group carried around 4.63 million scheduled passengers in the short- and medium-haul segment in the first seven months of 2007, 8.2% more than in the comparison period for 2006.While available seat kilometers (ASK) grew by 8.8%, revenue passenger kilometers (RPK) on these scheduled services grew more strongly, by 11.0%. The passenger load factor in this segment reached 66.5%, or 1.3 percentage points above the 2006 figure.

The month of July also saw further passenger growth of 7.3% in the short- and medium-haul segment compared to the previous year. Revenue passenger kilometers (RPK) on scheduled services in this segment increased by an impressive 10.8% compared to 2006, while scheduled availability (ASK) rose by 7.7%. The resultant passenger load factor of 71.3% was 2.0 percentage points up on last year.

In the long-haul segment, around 780,500 scheduled passengers were carried in the months from January to July 2007, 11.5% fewer than in the same period in 2006. This fall was to be expected due to the redimensioning of long-haul services. While availability on these scheduled services (ASK) was reduced according to plan by 23.7%, demand measured in revenue passenger kilometers (RPK) fell at the slower rate of 19.7%. The resultant passenger load factor in the long-haul segment was 4.0 percentage points up on the previous year, reaching 82.0%.

The Group offset its targeted reduction in long-haul market availability more successfully in July, with ASK down by 32.8% on 2006 and RPK falling by just 31.8% compared to the same period last year. This produced a further improvement in the passenger load factor, which rose by 1.3 percentage points to 85.3%.
With more than 5.4 million passengers carried on scheduled services, total growth from January to July was 4.8%. The cumulative traffic result on scheduled services measured in available seat kilometers (ASK) was subjected to targeted reductions of 11.3% compared to 2006, while revenue passenger kilometers on scheduled services (RPK) only fell by 9.3% on the comparison figure for the previous year. As a result, the passenger load factor on scheduled services was 74.8%, an improvement of 1.7 percentage points on the previous year.

The Austrian Airlines Group welcomed some 873,000 passengers onto its scheduled flights in July 2007, an increase of 2.2% on 2006. While scheduled availability (ASK) was reduced by 16.9% as planned, revenue passenger kilometers (RPK) fell by the same figure. As a result, the passenger load factor in July was 78.2%, the same level as the previous year.
Charter traffic as a proportion of total passenger volume totalled around 12.7% in the first seven months of the year. The reduction in the number of passengers in this segment - as in previous months - was a result of structural effects (Slovak Airlines being included in the comparison figures for 2006) and a targeted reduction in availability on medium- and long-haul routes in order to strengthen profitability.