Growth in premium air travel slowed in January

  • Published by Vedat

IATA announced its assessment of premium and economy travel in January.

iataHere are the key points:

• Growth in premium travel slowed in January, up 3.3% year-on-year but down on the December result of 4.5%;

• Economy class passenger numbers were up 2.9% in January year-on-year, also a slowdown on December growth of 4.2%;

• The timing of the Chinese New Year had some impact on the year-on-year comparisons, but not much overall;

• The seasonally adjusted trend weakened in January in both premium and economy markets;

• The decline could be month-on-month volatility, but a longer-term view of the trend suggests otherwise;

• Over the past 6 months, premium and economy passenger numbers have been increasing at just 2-3%;

• Weakness in the growth trend is not widespread though, it is largely isolated to markets connected to Europe;

• Premium travel within Europe contracted 0.5% in January year-on-year and the North Atlantic market was flat;

• Emerging markets, particularly those linked to Asia, are the source of growth in premium travel;

• Current levels of business confidence point to moderate growth in the months ahead;

• But with developing economies continuing to show weakness, downside risks for air travel demand remain a factor.

Hussein Dabbas as Regional Vice President for the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), said, “Today’s premium traffic numbers show the continuing strength of the Middle East as a driver of business air travel. For example, growth in January on the Africa- Middle East routes was 10.9% and from Europe it was 7.3%, compared to January 2012. This compares with overall global growth of only 3.3% over the same period. With international business confidence strengthening in recent surveys, this is a good sign of even more robust growth to come.”


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