Cathay Pacific Airways today released traffic figures for September 2003 that show a continued narrowing in the gap between the number of passengers carried compared to the same month a year ago.
In September 2003 Cathay Pacific carried 951,703 passengers, down 3.2 percent year-on-year. This was less than August’s 5.3 percent shortfall.
September’s passenger total dipped below the 1,083,011 carried in August 2003 as the peak summer travel season drew to a close. The passenger load factor increased 4.4 percentage points up from September last year - a reflection of a similar 4.3 percent reduction in available seat capacity.
The airline carried 75,651 tonnes of freight in September, virtually unchanged year-on-year, though up from 70,452 tonnes in August 2003 as orders picked up after the summer break. The cargo load factor was 67.7 percent, down 3.3 percentage points from September 2002.
The airline operated at reduced capacity for most of the month, though by the end of September all temporarily suspended services had been restored. Additional flights will shortly be added to Melbourne, Auckland, Rome and Johannesburg. London services recently went triple-daily.
Cathay Pacific General Manager Revenue Management, Sales & Distribution Ian Shiu said: “September’s passenger numbers were down a couple of percentage points from the same month last year, but so too was capacity. So in that respect we are doing a reasonable job of filling what seats we have available. Although front-end business improved slightly there remains some aggressive pricing by other airlines.”
Cathay Pacific General Manager Cargo Kenny Tang said: “Business in September saw its usual seasonal upswing as it recovered from the summer lull. Overall, we remain well positioned to maintain steady growth in the lead-up to a traditionally busier part of the year.”