October was the first month during which the effects of the September 11 events became fully visible.
In response to the decline in demand and forward bookings, overall capacity in October was reduced by 5% relative to October last year. At the start of the winter schedule on October 28, capacity was reduced further.
Compared to October last year, overall traffic decreased by 12%. Consequently, overall load factor decreased by 5.7 percentage points from 81.1% in October 2000 to 75.4% in October this year. Load factor decreased in all route areas.
During October, passenger traffic deteriorated by 18% while capacity was reduced by 8%. The largest decline in both traffic and capacity was on North Atlantic routes where traffic and capacity dropped by 34% and 28% respectively. Traffic also declined in the route areas Europe, Asia Pacific and Middle East / South Asia. Traffic in the route areas Africa and Mid & South Atlantic increased.
Passenger load factor decreased by 8.4 percentage points to 73.8%. Load factor deteriorated in all route areas. The year-on-year decline of 13.7 percentage points in the load factor of KLM`s Business Class was somewhat higher than the decline experienced in September, and was almost twice as high as the decline in the load factor of KLM`s Tourist Class.
Cargo traffic decreased by 4%, whereas capacity increased by 1%. Overall cargo load factor decreased by 3 percentage points to 71.6%. Load factors decreased in all route areas compared to October 2000. However, load factors improved somewhat compared to the pre-September 11 situation mainly due to inbound traffic from Asia Pacific. Traffic as well as capacity declined most visibly in the areas Europe and North Atlantic. Traffic to and from Africa also deteriorated. Cargo traffic in the route area Middle East / South Asia remained flat while cargo traffic on the Mid & South Atlantic showed an increase similar to that of passenger traffic.