|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE||12 March 2010|
Cathay Pacific Airways today released combined Cathay Pacific and Dragonair traffic figures for February 2010 that show a sharp rise in passenger volumes and cargo and mail tonnage compared to the same month last year when the impact of the global downturn was being deeply felt.
Last month, Cathay Pacific and Dragonair carried a total of 2,062,187 passengers - up 14% on February 2009. The month's passenger load factor was 84.1%, an increase of 7.5 percentage points, while capacity for the month, measured in available seat kilometres (ASKs), rose by 0.7%. For the first two months of 2010 combined, the number of passengers carried was up 6.7% compared to an ASK drop of 1.6%.
The two airlines carried a total of 119,801 tonnes of cargo and mail last month, up 18.7% on February last year. The cargo and mail load factor was 77.1%, a rise of 12.4 percentage points, while capacity, measured in available cargo/mail tonne kilometres, was 2.1% down. For the year to date, a tonnage rise of 24.9% compares to a capacity decline of 1.5%.
Cathay Pacific General Manager Revenue Management Tom Owen said: "The rise in passenger numbers and load factor in February was largely a result of Chinese New Year falling a month later than in 2009, although a general pick-up in the quality of demand since the lows of last year's economic crisis has continued. Demand was buoyant across both airlines' networks over the two-week Lunar New Year period, and we were encouraged to see the continuation of premium traffic growth after the holiday period ended. However premium volumes and yields in all cabins remain materially below pre-downturn levels."
Cathay Pacific General Manager Cargo Sales & Marketing Titus Diu said: "We experienced a spike in demand prior to Chinese New Year but then, as expected, there was softening in the key Mainland markets over the holiday period. However, demand for the month as a whole was fairly robust and the fact that we cancelled a number of scheduled services helped us to achieve a high load factor together with some increases in yield."
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