Although the demand is growing, the operating environment has become more challenging. As noted previously, the yield has declined more than anticipated during 2016. In addition, during the autumn jet fuel prices have started to increase combined with an unfavorable USD appreciation versus the SEK. This has had a negative effect on working capital and earnings. In addition, the introduced aviation tax in Norway has had a negative effect on the yield development.
The total capacity increase in 2015/16 amounts to 10%. In 2016/2017, SAS’s total capacity increase will be lower. The increase will primarily be driven by a full-year effect from the new intercontinental routes that commenced during 2015/2016, increased capacity on leisure routes and the fact that the Airbus A320neo is larger than the aircraft it will replace.
SAS scheduled traffic development in November
SAS increased its scheduled capacity in November by 10.4% and the traffic grew 17.3%. The overall load factor was 73.7%, the highest November load factor recorded for SAS. The improvement was driven by positive development on SAS’s intercontinental routes and international routes within Europe.
SAS intercontinental traffic increased 29.4% and the capacity was up 21.8%. The growth was driven by the new routes to/from Los Angeles and Miami.
The traffic on the European/Intrascandinavian routes increased by 13.6%. The growth was strongest on leisure oriented routes. On domestic routes, the capacity was increased by 1.6% and the traffic was up by 3.5%.