Asia Pacific airlines carry 4.8m intl pax in April as region pursues recovery

By Luke Barras-hill |

Asia Pacific airlines handled a total of 4.8 million international passengers in April – a 272.9% surge compared with the same month in 2021, reports the Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA).

The progressive easing of border restrictions across the region coupled with pent-up demand for travel has helped to stimulate the business and leisure segments, said AAPA.

Demand lifted to an average of 15.2% of the volumes posted in the pre-pandemic month of April 2019.

Revenue per passenger jumped by 302.7% year-on-year, linked to the rebound in long-haul traffic.

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Available seat capacity expanded by 77.5% year-on-year, resulting in a solid 36.3 percentage-point increase in average international passenger load factors to 64.9% for April 2022.

However, the Russia-Ukraine war served to constrain manufacturing activity and global trading in the second quarter while questions hang over the unlock of China due to strict Covid-19 curbs.

Asia Pacific carriers recorded a 36.3 percentage-point increase in average international passenger load factors to 64.9% in April – the highest since the start of the pandemic.

International air cargo demand fell for the second consecutive month in April 2022 and by 8.5% year-on-year.

Subhas Menon, Director General, AAPA commented: “With vaccination rates high in the region, the general easing of border regulations has unleashed pent-up travel demand, as evidenced by the strong growth in international passenger numbers in April and healthy forward booking patterns.

“By contrast, the air cargo business faces some challenges; Asia Pacific continues to lag in the recovery of international travel. To build on the current momentum towards a full recovery, it is vital that governments and industry stakeholders collaborate closely with the aim of simplifying border measures and streamlining digital applications to make air travel truly seamless.”

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