The International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced that strong passenger traffic demand will continue in April 2023, with air traffic globally now reaching 90.5% levels before the Covid-19 pandemic.

Total traffic in April 2023 (measured in Revenue Passenger Kilometers or RPK) increased by 45.8% compared to April 2022. 81.3%, the industry’s load factor “was only 1.8 percentage points lower than the pre-pandemic level.” THE domestic traffic of April increased by 42.6% compared to the period of the previous year and has now “fully recovered”, even posting an increase of 2.9% compared to the results of April 2019.

THE international traffic grew 48.0% from April 2022, with “all markets seeing healthy growth and carriers in the Asia-Pacific region continuing to lead the recovery.” International RPKs hit 83.6% of April 2019 levels.

April continued the strong traffic trend we saw in the first quarter of 2023. Slowing inflation and growing consumer confidence in most OECD countries, combined with lower jet fuel prices, suggest a continued strong demand for air travel and moderating cost pressures “, summarizes in a press release Willie Walsh, director general of IATA.

International passenger markets

The airlines in Europe recorded a traffic increase of 22.6% compared to April 2022. Capacity increased by 16.0% and the load factor increased by 4.5 percentage points to reach 83.3%“which is the second highest among the regions”.

The airlines of Middle East recorded a traffic increase of 38.0% compared to April a year ago. Capacity increased by 27.8% and load factor increased by 5.6 percentage points to reach 76.2%.

Airline traffic in Africa was up 53.5% in April 2023 from a year ago, the second highest among regions. April capacity increased 50.0% and load factor climbed 1.6 percentage points to 69.8%“the lowest level among the regions”.

The airlines ofAsia Pacific recorded a 192.7% increase in traffic in April 2023 compared to April 2022. Capacity increased by 145.3% and the load factor increased by 13.2 percentage points to reach 81.6%.

carrier traffic north americans increased by 34.8% in April 2023 compared to the 2022 period. Capacity increased by 26.5% and the load factor increased by 5.2 percentage points to reach 83.8%, “which was the highest among the regions”. North American international traffic is now fully restored, with RPKs 0.4% above April 2019 levels “, underlines the IATA.

The airlines ofLatin America recorded a traffic increase of 25.8% compared to the same month in 2022. April capacity increased by 26.4% and the load factor fell by 0.4 percentage points to 83.1%.

Approaching the high season travel in the northern hemisphere, planes and airports are full of people eager to take advantage of their freedom to travel. Airlines are working hard to provide them with a seamless travel experience despite ongoing supply chain shortages and other operational challenges. Unfortunately, some governments seem more inclined towards punitive regulation than doing their part to enable hassle-free travel. The authoritarian efforts of the Dutch government to reduce the capacity of Schiphol airport is a prime example. », points out Willie Walsh.

And then we focus on the regulation of passenger rights European style that is spreading like a contagion. Proponents of this approach miss a key fact: EU 261 has not led to a reduction in delays. Indeed, penalizing airlines increases their costs, but does not solve delays caused by factors over which they have no control, such as inefficient air traffic management or staff shortages at service providers. Air Navigation. The best thing Europe can do to improve the travel experience is to creating the single european sky. As for other governments considering regulating passenger rights, avoiding a repeat of Europe’s mistake would be a useful starting point. », concludes the CEO of IATA.