Cathay Pacific reports strong April 2024 traffic figures

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Cathay Pacific A321neo

Cathay Pacific has released its traffic figures for April 2024, highlighting robust travel demand driven by various holiday periods and large-scale events across the region.

In April 2024, Cathay Pacific carried 1,741,585 passengers, marking a 26.1% increase compared to April 2023. Revenue passenger kilometres (RPKs) saw a year-on-year rise of 27.8%. However, the passenger load factor fell by 5.4 percentage points to 81.6%, while available seat kilometres (ASKs) increased by 36.2%. From January to April 2024, the airline transported 7,143,363 passengers, a 47.3% increase from the same period in 2023, with ASKs up by 50.9% and RPKs up by 42.3%.

Cathay Pacific’s cargo division handled 117,428 tonnes in April 2024, a 7.4% increase year-on-year. Cargo revenue tonne kilometres (RFTKs) slightly decreased by 0.4%, and the cargo load factor dropped by 4.2 percentage points to 59.5%, while available cargo tonne kilometres (AFTKs) grew by 6.6%. For the first four months of 2024, cargo tonnage rose by 10.1% to 473,808 tonnes, with AFTKs increasing by 12.9% and RFTKs by 4.5%.

Travel Insights

Chief Customer and Commercial Officer Lavinia Lau noted that April’s strong travel demand was bolstered by holidays and events such as Easter, the Cathay/HSBC Hong Kong Sevens, and festive periods in Southeast Asia. Significant business travel demand was also seen, particularly due to the Canton Fair in Guangzhou.

Cargo Performance

Lau reported a 13% decrease in cargo tonnage from March to April, attributed to strong quarter-end demand in March and April holidays. However, year-on-year cargo tonnage increased by 7%, driven by e-commerce shipments from Hong Kong and the Chinese Mainland.

Outlook

The expansion of the Individual Visit Scheme to include eight more Chinese cities is expected to boost Hong Kong’s tourism. Cathay Pacific plans to operate up to 210 return flights per week between Hong Kong and the Chinese Mainland this summer. New destinations and increased flight frequencies are also planned, including the resumption of services to Barcelona and new routes to Sanya and Clark. The summer season is anticipated to see strong travel demand, especially from returning students.

For cargo, Cathay Pacific expects steady growth, particularly on routes between Asia and North America.

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