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United Traffic Drops, Load Factor Raises

Wed Jun 05, 2002 12:13 am

United Airlines' Traffic Drops 13.9 Percent, But Load Factor Rises to 73.2%

"CHICAGO, June 4 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- United Airlines' (NYSE: UAL - News) total scheduled revenue passenger miles (RPMs) fell 13.9 percent in May vs. the comparable month in 2001, on a capacity decrease of 17.2 percent. However, the carrier's passenger load factor rose to 73.2 percent from 70.4 percent a year ago."

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How can traffic drop yet load factor increases?
Never Trust Your Fuel Gauge
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RE: United Traffic Drops, Load Factor Raises

Wed Jun 05, 2002 12:24 am

They are flying fewer planes.
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Joined: Wed Sep 27, 2000 10:11 am

RE: United Traffic Drops, Load Factor Raises

Wed Jun 05, 2002 12:29 am

Traffic drops when you cut routes, cut frequency, and generally fly less planes than the comparable year before.

Load goes up when those planes are flying around a few % more full, regardless of cuts in routes or frequency.

In case that doesn't make sense. GeorgeAirways could have only one plane and one route all year, I fly a 744 from SFO to OAK. That would be 100% traffic for the base year, so about 416 seats. Lets say that once a year flight I fill to 50% capacity. My load factor is 50%

Next year I get a second 744 and fly two flights from SFO to OAK, my RPMs go up 100%, but my total load could stay the same if I fill that second 744 only to 50%.

Traffic double, load stayed the same......

I hppe that was clear and that I didn't botch it. I don't know if I confused ASL and RPMs at all, please correct me if I did.

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