LAN traffic up 15% in May

Washington DC
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Chile's LAN posted a 14.9% increase in traffic in May, compared with the same month in 2011.

Capacity increased 8.4% with the load factor up 4.6 percentage points to 82.3%.

Domestic passenger traffic in Chile, Argentina, Peru, Ecuador and Colombia rose 16.7%, as capacity increased 13.1%, resulting in a 2.4 percentage point increase in domestic load factor to 76.6%.

International passenger traffic rose 14.1%, with capacity up 6.3%, resulting in a 5.9 percentage point increase in international load factor to 85.2%.

International capacity expansion was mainly driven by an increase in operations on certain regional routes, as well as routes to Mexico and the Caribbean, says the airline, adding that the growth was partially offset by reduced capacity on routes to Europe.

Cargo traffic fell 2.8% as capacity decreased 3.6%, resulting in the cargo load factor increasing by just 0.6 percentage points to 69.1%.

The decrease in cargo capacity was attributed to no additional freighters being incorporated into the airline's fleet since January 2011, in addition to decreased availability in the bellies of passenger aircraft. The decrease in traffic was driven by lower demand to Latin America.