and Dragonair’s combined traffic figures for October 2008 show passenger growth falling behind capacity growth, together with a significant
fall in the amount of cargo and mail carried compared to the same month last year.
In October, Cathay Pacific and Dragonair between them carried a total of 2,091,339 passengers – up 2.6% on the same month in 2007 but some
way behind the 11.6% growth in capacity, measured in available seat kilometres (ASKs), for the same period. The load factor for the month was
down 5.3 percentage points at 75.5%. For the year to date, the number of passengers carried has risen by 9.2% compared to a capacity rise of
The amount of cargo and mail carried in October dropped by 7.4% to 144,466 tonnes, while the month’s capacity, measured in available
cargo/mail tonne kilometres, fell by 2.6% compared to the same month in 2007. The cargo and mail load factor dropped by 2.9 percentage points
to 65.9%. For the year to date, cargo and mail tonnage has climbed by 2.4% compared to a capacity rise of 2.8%.
Cathay Pacific General Manager Revenue Management Tom Owen
said, “We saw continued weakness in our passenger traffic in October
despite capacity growth. October is traditionally one of the busiest months for corporate travel but the peak didn’t materialise this year. Demand
to and from Hong Kong remained depressed, particularly on the corporate sales side. We also continue to see the fallout from the financial crisis
on most long-haul routes as well as regionally, reflecting a tightening of corporate travel policies and reduced travel for both business and
leisure. The outlook remains challenging."
Cathay Pacific General Manager Cargo Sales & Marketing Titus Diu
added, “Usually we see a surge in our cargo business in October but this year
demand was weaker than expected in most of our key markets, including Hong Kong. We saw no significant post-Olympics pickup out of China
while the mini-peak anticipated after the National Day holidays in the Mainland didn’t materialise. We worked to offset weakening demand by
combining freighter flights or making ad hoc cancellations where possible.”
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