June 2009 may be the 11th successive month of cutbacks in global airline schedules, but the rate of decline in seat capacity is lower than at any time since October 2008, reports OAG, an aviation data firm that tracks airline performance.
The world’s airlines have scheduled 4 percent fewer flights for June 2009 compared with the same month last year, with a 2 percent drop in seat capacity of 6.7 million fewer seats, OAG says. The total number of flights scheduled to operate worldwide this month is 2.43 million, offering 297.5 million seats to travelers around the globe.
Last month, the year-on-year global frequency and capacity figures were down by 5 percent and 3 percent respectively. Global year-on-year capacity reductions had remained at 3 percent every month since November 2008, apart from a sharp 7 percent decline in February 2009.
David Beckerman, vice president OAG Market Intelligence, said, “As the Northern Hemisphere begins its summer holiday season, the airline community is curbing its capacity cuts in anticipation of a welcome boost in air travel. However, we shouldn’t assume that this is the start of recovery and growth; the outlook remains uncertain and figures are still down year-on-year, but it does indicate a glimmer of economic confidence.”