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Rise in premium pax “not sustainable”

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Premium passengers rebound in August, with 8.5% rise

Premium passenger numbers rebounded surprisingly strongly in August, with 8.5% year-on-year growth, compared to a 0.5% contraction in July, IATA says. But the association adds that it remains “cautious about extrapolating the improvement in premium travel into the months ahead”.
Economy class travel was also up, 6.2% higher than a year ago, compared to July’s 3% increase.
IATA said in a statement: “The modest improvement in business confidence doesn’t justify the significant rise in business travel in August. The rebound was narrowly based, with much of the increase coming from within Europe and across the North Atlantic. Since much of the Eurozone is in recession or slow economic growth, that does not look sustainable.”
The association thinks that “the sharp rise in year-on-year growth is partly due to Hurricane Irene and European capacity cuts reducing traffic in August 2011”. It concludes: “Further improvement in business confidence should benefit premium travel, but it’s too early to suggest a higher growth trend.”
Air Transport News
[pictured: Lufthansa’s new Senator Lounge, Frankfurt]

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