ERA’s first quarter results show that airline members of the European Regions Airline Association (ERA) are proving their tenacity, professionalism and efficiency in these turbulent times with improving passenger load factor and punctuality.
ERA’s data watch* has recorded an increase in its airlines’ passenger load factor from 64.2 per cent in 2012 to 66.5 per cent for the first quarter of 2013. Airline punctuality has also been positive - 85.7 per cent of flights departed on time and 96.7 per cent of flights left within 60 minutes of their scheduled slot. However, although there is wide variation, the average reduction in traffic (passenger km) among reporting ERA carriers has been 10 per cent, with capacity (seat km) cut by 13 per cent year-on-year.
Simon McNamara, Director General ERA adds: “ERA members continue to show their resilience and commitment to intra-European air travel in extremely trying circumstances. ERA is working harder than ever on behalf of its members to ensure that the EU's legislators increase their partnership with the intra-European transport industry and that new legislative proposals help, rather than hinder, growth and development of the industry. In such challenging conditions the practical support and advice that membership of ERA brings is invaluable.”
Providing an independent analysis of the results, Peter Morris, chief economist, Flight Global – Ascend, advises: “The statistics provided by ERA members reflect a picture of perhaps the toughest market yet seen for European regional operators. A mix of weak regional economic demand in 2012/13, continued high fuel prices and intense competition has proved a lethal cocktail to cope with over the last year. The intense focus for ERA members remains on costs, efficiency and the customer. Strong lobbying with national politicians is essential to ensure that the indisputable and real economic benefits of regional aviation are not repeatedly undermined by ill-thought through legislation and taxes.”