|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE||14 September 2009|
Cathay Pacific Airways today released combined Cathay Pacific and Dragonair traffic figures for August 2009 that show an increase in passenger numbers compared with the same month last year, though cargo and mail tonnage showed another year-on-year drop.
Cathay Pacific and Dragonair carried a total of 2,210,068 passengers in August - up 3.8% against the same month in 2008 - while capacity for the month, measured in available seat kilometres (ASKs), was down by 5.0%. The month's load factor was up 5.7 percentage points to 84.1%. For the year to date, the number of passengers carried is down by 4.0% compared to a capacity decline of 3.2%.
The two airlines carried a total of 131,732 tonnes of cargo and mail last month, down 6.3% on August 2008, while the cargo and mail load factor rose by 6.1 percentage points to 72.0%. Capacity for the month, measured in available cargo/mail tonne kilometres, was 14.1% down. For the year to date, tonnage has fallen by 13.1% against a capacity drop of 13.9%.
Cathay Pacific General Manager Revenue Management Tom Owen said: "Comparisons with 2008 are skewed due to the dampening of demand on our Mainland China routes over the Olympic period last year. Although the summer peak traffic arrived much later and at a lower yield than normal, we did see a strong recovery in pent-up regional demand for the month with an abating H1N1 impact. Traffic in the premium cabins, however, remained weak in comparison to previous years throughout August and at materially lower yields."
Cathay Pacific General Manager Cargo Sales & Marketing Titus Diu said: "Our cargo business showed further signs of bottoming out in August with the lowest year-on-year tonnage decline of the year to date and a continued increase in demand out of key home market. However, while tonnage is undoubtedly picking up there is still a lot of competition in the market and our yield has yet to see any significant pickup from a very low base."
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