Air China posted a 29% increase in total passenger traffic in August, including an 11% rise in international passenger traffic.
"For the first time in 2009, international routes achieved double-digit growth in passenger traffic and volume," says Air China. "Turning to the cargo market, both the traffic and volume growth returned to positive territory for the first time this year."
The carrier's overall RPKs grew by 29% in August year-on-year. Domestic RPKS were 43% higher, international RPKs grew by 11%, and Hong Kong and Macau traffic rose 36%.
In real terms, the number of passengers carried rose 38% in August to 3.83 million. Domestic passenger numbers were up 42% at 3.2 million, international passenger numbers rose 16% to 500,000, and Hong Kong/Macau passenger numbers were 43% higher at 112,000.
To cater to rising demand, Air China increased overall ASK capacity by 12%. Domestic ASKs rose 29% and Hong Kong/Macau ASKs increased 5%, but the carrier continued to slash international capacity, which was down 9%.
This led to a 14.6 percentage point rise in the international passenger load factor to 84.6%. The domestic load factor rose 7.4 percentage points to 80%, and Hong Kong/Macau rose 18.3 percentage points to 81.5%. Across its entire network, the passenger load factor rose 10.5 percentage points to 81.6%.
In terms of its cargo business, revenue freight tonne kilometre rose 6%. The domestic market posted a 15% jump, the international market 3%, and the Hong Kong and Macau market up 26%.