Global air travel at 90.5% of pre-virus levels in April
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World air traffic reached 90.5% of its pre-coronavirus levels this April thanks to the ongoing strong recovery in travel demand, according to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) on Thursday.
Air traffic – measured in revenue passenger kilometers, or RPKs – surged 45.8% from a year ago in April.
Industry load factor stood at 81.3% in April, only 1.8 percentage points below the pre-pandemic level in 2019.
"The easing of inflation and rising consumer confidence in most OECD countries combined with declining jet fuel prices, suggests sustained strong air travel demand and moderating cost pressures," Willie Walsh, IATA’s director general, said in a statement.
The air transport body highlighted that domestic traffic managed to overtake its pre-virus level with a 42.6% year-on-year hike in April. The figure was up by 2.9% compared to April 2019.
International traffic soared 48.0% from the prior year, with RPKs reaching 83.6% of the pre-virus level. All markets recorded growth in the month with carriers in the Asia-Pacific region continuing to lead the recovery.
Separate IATA data showed on Wednesday that global demand for air cargo, measured in cargo ton-kilometers, fell 6.6% compared to April 2022.
Capacity – measured in available cargo ton-kilometers – up 13.4% compared to last year.