Cathay Pacific releases traffic figures for September
Cathay Pacific released its September traffic figures as the airline gears up for the holiday wave. According to the press release, travel numbers remained strong.
Cathay Pacific reportedly carried 1,542,144 passengers during September, an increase of 480 percent from the same time last year. The month’s RPKs (revenue passenger kilometres) increased 316 percent year on year. Passenger load factor increased by 11.2 percentage points to 83.7 percent, while capacity measured in ASKs (available seat kilometres) increased by 260.4 percent.
In the first nine months of 2023, the total number of passengers on Cathay Pacific increased by 1,099 percent against a 546.7 percent increase in capacity and a 736.8 percent increase in RPKs, compared to the same period in 2022.
Travel statistics for September 2023
September marked the end of peak season for passenger travel for the airline.
“As we exited the busy peak summer months for passenger travel, we saw increased student traffic in September ahead of the start of the new school year, in particular to the UK. To cater for the strong demand, we increased the frequency of our flights between Hong Kong and the UK in September, with our services from Hong Kong achieving load factors of 98 percent," said Chief Customer and Commercial Officer Lavinia Lau.
Lau added, “In addition to student traffic, there was a notable increase in outbound passenger travel from Hong Kong during the last week of September coinciding with the Mid-Autumn Festival and National Day holidays. We also saw strong demand from the Greater Bay Area and the rest of the Chinese Mainland for travel both into Hong Kong and to destinations beyond around the holiday period.”
According to Lau, the Asian Games contributed to demand in September. She said, “Meanwhile, demand [for travel to] Hangzhou was elevated with the Asian Games and Cathay Pacific was proud to carry a significant number of athletes, spectators and officials to attend this incredible sporting occasion. It has also been great to see more conferences and exhibitions taking place in Hong Kong, which stimulated demand in the premium cabins as we near the traditional business travel peak."
Looking to the future
Based on last month’s traffic figures, Lau shared insight into what the airline expects in the weeks and months ahead.
“Looking ahead at the coming months, on the travel side we will continue to increase capacity as much as is feasible to provide more choice and flexibility for our customers,” she said. “Earlier this month, we resumed our Chicago passenger service, which received a very encouraging response from our customers. With the next holiday period not until Christmas, we will remain agile to capture demand, including connecting traffic via the Hong Kong hub.”