International air travel slows in November says IATA

International air passenger traffic slowed in November and freight transport slumped compared to a year ago because of a poor economic environment, industry association IATA said Friday.

"Passenger traffic was 4.3 percent above November 2010 levels but this is skewed as November 2010 was a particularly weak month," the association said in a statement.

The association said the softening in passenger markets was apparent when compared to October 2011, with a 0.5 percent decline on a seasonally-adjusted basis.

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IATA said air freight business was also weak in November, falling by 3.1 percent from the same month a year ago despite a 1.1 percent increase from the previous month.

In November, passenger load factors fell sharply to 76.3 percent from 78.5 percent in October, the association said.

"This shows that the weakness in passenger demand is outpacing airlines' ability to adjust capacity accordingly," IATA said.

"Regional differences are sharp. While North American carriers saw a 0.8 percent decline in travel, carriers in the Middle East experienced a 10.1 percent increase, followed by 9.0 percent for Latin American airlines," it said.

by Safak Timur © 2011 AFP

Source: AFP
Date: Dec 30, 2011