In 2000 LOT flew 2,791,374 passengers, a 7.2% growth in compari-son to the previous year. Growth was achieved in respect to all types of flights: foreign (+6.5%), domestic (+16.8%) and charter (+0.6%).
The load factor equaled 68% and although it was 2% lower than its corresponding figure for 1999, LOT still remains on an average European level. There was a very significant increase in the number of offered seats after the startup of the hub at the Warsaw-Okecie Airport (November 2000), causing a temporary decline in this index as of the winter season.
The increased number of flights was a result of the introduction of eight new Embraer ERJ-145 planes and three Boeings 737. LOT now offers a greater number of flights and in 2000 offered 8,279 more scheduled flights than in 1999.
These good flight results and consequentially financial results are also the effect of LOT’s commencement of cooperation with The Qualiflyer Group, the introduction of new reservation, airport and fre-quent flyer systems and the continuation of the restructuring program aimed at adapting LOT to the alliance’s structure.
A 41% increase in total income can be attributed to refinancing part of the LOT’s fleet. After excluding incidental income related to refi-nancing, total income increased by 9.9% and was higher than growth in the number of flights.
These good financial results were achieved in spite of an enormous increase in aviation fuel costs equaling over 165 million zloty, in-creased domestic and foreign interest rates and unfavorable changes in foreign currency rates. PLL LOT SA closed the year 2000 with a gross profit equaling 49.7 million PLN in comparison to its 1999 gross profit of 3.6 million PLN. This is the third successive year which LOT has closed with a positive result.