A combination of poor conditions in the global economy and the beginnings of an “Iraq effect” impacted strongly upon passenger volume on scheduled services during the reporting month of February 2003. The number of passengers carried on scheduled services of the Austrian Airlines Group fell by 2.4 % against the comparable month the previous year. When charter traffic is taken into account, passenger figures compared to February 2002 show a slight rise of 1.3 %. Due to targeted capacity management, the overall load factor fell by just 0.7 percentage points to 67.8 %.
Compared to the first two months of last year, the summarised statistics for January and February 2003 show an overall increase in passenger volume of 5.3 % to 1,136,137 people. It should be taken into account that the early months of 2002 were themselves affected by falling traffic volume as a result of the attacks of September 11th 2001. Available seat kilometers on scheduled and charter services increased by 24.3 %, while the number of revenue passenger kilometers rose by 26.1 %, resulting in an improvement of the load factor by 1.1 percentage points to 67.5 %.