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January Airline Traffic Data; January 2004 Domestic Traffic Up 1.5 Percent From January 2003

January Airline Traffic Data; January 2004 Domestic Traffic Up 1.5 Percent From January 2003

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BTS 08-04
Dave Smallen
202-366-5568

Thursday, April 15, 2004 - The U.S. Department of Transportation's Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) today reported, in a release of preliminary data, that U.S. airlines carried 44.1 million domestic passengers in January, 1.5 percent more than in January 2003 (Table 1).

These passengers were carried on 772,226 flights, down 2.6 percent from the flights operated in January 2003.

In other domestic comparisons from January 2003 to January 2004:

Revenue passenger miles, a measure of the number of passengers and the distance flown, were up 5.6 percent.

Available seat-miles, a measure of airline capacity, were up 4.1 percent.

Load factor, a measure of how many seats are sold and used, was up 0.9 percentage points.

Flight stage length, the average non-stop distance, was up 7.7 percent.

Passenger trip length, the average distance passengers travel, was up 3.9 percent.

Among airlines, Delta Airlines carried 5.8 million domestic passengers in January, the most of any airline (Table 3).

Among airports, Hartsfield-Jackson International in Atlanta continued in January to be the busiest domestic airport, with 2.6 million passenger boardings (Table 4).

Table 1: Domestic Airline Travel in January

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  January 2003 January 2004
Passengers 43,436,151 44,094,013
Flights 792,585 772,226
Revenue Passenger Miles (000) 36,509,643 38,552,822
Available Seat-Miles (000) 56,609,153 58,945,979
Load factor 64.5% 65.4%
Flight stage length 572 616
Passenger trip length 841 874

Source: T-100 Domestic Market and Segment

Table 2. Total Industry Domestic Enplanements

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Month 2003 2004
January 43,436,151 44,094,013
February 41,529,610  
March 50,475,121  
April 47,559,030  
May 49,582,388  
June 52,699,681  
July 56,215,962  
August 54,387,683  
September 44,387,194  
October 50,294,440  
November 47,409,452  
December 49,827,732  

Source: T-100 Domestic Market

Additional airline traffic data can be found on the BTS website at TranStats, the Intermodal Transportation Database at http://transtats.bts.gov. Click on "Aviation", then on "Air Carrier Statistics (Form 41 Traffic)", then click on "T-100 Domestic Market."

Table 3. Top 10 Airlines, ranked by January 2004 Domestic Enplanements

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Rank Airline Name January 2003 December 2003 January 2004 Jan. 2003 Rank
1 Delta Airlines 6,261,054 6,503,916 5,814,214 1
2 American Airlines 5,660,534 5,897,565 5,475,307 2
3 Southwest Airlines 5,488,639 6,119,147 5,362,666 3
4 United Airlines 4,373,000 4,742,188 4,155,776 4
5 Northwest Airlines 3,101,026 3,723,150 3,090,278 5
6 US Airways 2,647,486 3,128,235 2,649,707 6
7 Continental Airlines 2,284,065 2,672,575 2,275,091 7
8 America West Airlines 1,404,771 1,569,945 1,466,865 8
9 Alaska Airlines 878,763 1,133,722 945,325 10
10 American Eagle Airlines 973,514 1,059,268 936,147 9

Source: T-100 Domestic Market

Table 4. Top 10 Airports ranked by January 2004 Domestic Enplanements

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Rank Airport Name January 2003 December 2003 January 2004 Jan. 2003 Rank
1 Hartsfield-Jackson International 2,690,759 3,083,286 2,628,915 1
2 O'Hare International 2,049,877 2,463,192 2,032,504 2
3 Dallas-Ft Worth International 1,733,235 2,112,448 1,804,986 3
4 Los Angeles International 1,521,371 1,690,899 1,511,954 4
5 Denver International 1,277,168 1,502,938 1,402,588 7
6 Las Vegas McCarran International 1,291,906 1,298,209 1,370,070 6
7 Phoenix Sky Harbor International 1,333,550 1,461,120 1,366,339 5
8 Orlando International 1,002,883 1,063,743 1,130,895 9
9 Minneapolis-St. Paul International 1,071,851 1,286,770 1,129,042 8
10 George Bush Intercontinental 1,002,179 1,201,869 1,022,589 10

Source: T-100 Domestic Market

Data are compiled from monthly reports filed with BTS by commercial air carriers detailing operations, passenger traffic and freight traffic. January 2004 traffic data are preliminary and include data received by BTS from 103 airlines as of April 13. Data are subject to revision.

Revised data from December and previous months are posted on the BTS website at http://transtats.bts.gov. BTS will release February traffic data on May 13.