You are here

October 2005 Airline Traffic Data: 10-Month Domestic Traffic Up 4.6 Percent From 2004

October 2005 Airline Traffic Data: 10-Month Domestic Traffic Up 4.6 Percent From 2004

PDF

BTS 02-06
Dave Smallen
202-366-5568

Thursday, January 12, 2006 - U.S. airlines carried 4.6 percent more domestic passengers and flew 0.5 percent more domestic flights during the first 10 months of 2005 than they did during the same period in 2004, the U.S. Department of Transportation's Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) today reported, in a release of preliminary data (Table 1).

But the airlines carried fewer passengers in October 2005 than in October 2004, the first monthly drop from the previous year since BTS began keeping comparable records of passenger traffic in November 2002 (Table 2). The 5.6 percent decline in the number of flights in October 2005 from October 2004 (Table 5) was the largest decline in a month from the same month in the previous year since 2002 as bankrupt airlines have reduced scheduled service.

BTS, a part of DOT's Research and Innovative Technology Administration (RITA), reported that the airlines carried 554.1 million domestic passengers during the first 10 months of 2005, up from the 529.6 million carried between January and October 2004 (Table 2). The passengers were carried on 8.47 million flights, up 0.5 percent from the 8.42 million flights operated in 2004 (Table 1).

In other domestic comparisons from the first 10 months of 2004 to the first 10 months of 2005:

Revenue passenger miles, a measure of the number of passengers and the distance flown, were up 4.8 percent.

Available seat-miles, a measure of airline capacity using the number of seats and the distance flown, were up 1.4 percent.

Passenger load factor, passengers carried as a proportion of available seats, was up 2.6 load factor points.

Flight stage length, the average non-stop distance flown per departure, was up 1.7 percent.

Passenger trip length, the average distance flown per passenger, was 868 miles per trip, up only slightly from 866 the first 10 months of 2004.

Among airlines, Southwest Airlines carried 73.8 million domestic passengers during the first 10 months of 2005, the most of any airline (Table 3).

Among airports, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport was the busiest U.S. airport for domestic travel during the first 10 months of 2005, with 32.6 million passenger boardings (Table 4).

October 2005 Airline Traffic

For the month of October 2005, U.S. airlines carried 53.7 million domestic passengers, 1.6 percent less than in October 2004 (Table 5).

These passengers were carried on 822,374 flights, down 5.6 percent from the 871,479 flights operated in October 2004.

In other month-to-month domestic comparisons from October 2004 to October 2005:

Revenue passenger miles, a measure of the number of passengers and the distance flown, were down 0.6 percent.

Available seat-miles, a measure of airline capacity, were down 2.8 percent.

Passenger load factor, passengers carried as a proportion of available seats, was up 1.7 load factor points.

Flight stage length, the average non-stop distance flown per departure, was up 3.6 percent.

Passenger trip length, the average distance flown per passenger, was up 1.1percent.

Among airlines, Southwest Airlines carried 7.6 million domestic passengers during October, the most of any airline (Table 6).

Among airports, Hartsfield-Jackson International in Atlanta was the busiest U.S. airport for domestic travel in October with 3.1 million passenger boardings (Table 7).

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."

Data are compiled from monthly reports filed with BTS by commercial air carriers detailing operations, passenger traffic and freight traffic. October traffic data are preliminary and include data received by BTS from 130 airlines as of Jan. 9. Data are subject to revision.

Table 1: Domestic Airline Travel January to October

Excel | CSV

  Jan-Oct. 2004 Jan-Oct. 2005 Change
Passengers 529,582,175 554,053,210 4.6%
Flights 8,422,790 8,468,560 0.5%
Revenue Passenger Miles(000) 458,586,719 480,815,656 4.8%
Available Seat Miles(000) 613,086,639 621,483,970 1.4%
Load Factor 74.8 77.4 2.6 points
Flight Stage Length* 593 603 1.7%
Passenger Trip Length** 866 868 0.2%

Source: Bureau of Transportation Statistics, T-100 Domestic Market and Segment

* The average non-stop distance flown per departure in miles

** The average distance flown per passenger in miles

Table 2: Total Industry Domestic Enplanements

Excel | CSV

Month 2003 2004 2005 2004-2005 Pct. Change
January 43,365,042 44,223,065 48,204,617 9.0%
February 41,480,320 45,726,295 47,327,802 3.5%
March 50,404,158 54,649,236 59,145,660 8.2%
April 47,380,661 53,740,731 55,244,677 2.8%
May 49,430,970 53,421,459 57,583,259 7.8%
June 52,562,332 57,381,300 60,002,560 4.6%
July 56,167,980 60,067,644 62,741,661 4.5%
August 54,347,183 57,793,104 59,389,236 2.8%
September 44,605,229 47,996,736 50,731,053 5.7%
October 50,372,738 54,582,605 53,682,685 -1.6%
November 47,478,546 52,054,399    
December 50,146,795 52,923,041    
Annual Total 587,743,957 634,561,619    
Jan.-Oct. Total 490,116,613 529,582,175 554,053,210 4.6%

Source: Bureau of Transportation Statistics, T-100 Domestic Market

Table 3: Top 10 Airlines, ranked by January-October 2005 Domestic Enplanements

Excel | CSV

Jan-Oct 2005 Rank Carrier Jan-Oct 2005 Passengers Jan-Oct 2004 Rank Jan-Oct 2004 Passengers
1 Southwest 73,763,408 1 67,854,148
2 Delta 66,322,374 2 66,232,032
3 American 64,540,045 3 60,704,637
4 United 46,086,115 4 50,692,556
5 Northwest 39,681,204 5 38,343,765
6 US Airways 31,867,507 6 31,555,223
7 Continental 27,232,421 7 26,202,750
8 America West 17,492,550 8 16,819,838
9 American Eagle 13,970,440 10 11,893,071
10 AirTran 13,586,401 12 10,747,418

Source: Bureau of Transportation Statistics, T-100 Domestic Market

Table 4: Top 10 Airports ranked by January-October 2005 Domestic Enplanements

Excel | CSV

Jan-Oct 2005 Rank Airport Name Jan-Oct 2005 Passengers Jan-Oct 2004 Rank Jan-Oct 2004 Passengers
1 Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta 32,622,096 1 31,375,255
2 Chicago O'Hare 26,174,967 2 26,113,963
3 Dallas-Ft. Worth 21,223,558 3 21,503,968
4 Los Angeles Int'l 17,790,254 4 17,825,025
5 Las Vegas McCarran 17,205,074 6 16,191,349
6 Denver 16,813,225 5 16,547,668
7 Phoenix Sky Harbor 16,224,104 7 15,487,350
8 Minneapolis-St.Paul 14,126,292 8 13,597,197
9 Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County 13,170,757 9 12,702,471
10 Houston Bush Intercontinental 12,968,236 11 11,760,657

Source: Bureau of Transportation Statistics, T-100 Domestic Market

Table 5: Domestic Airline Travel in October

Excel | CSV

  Oct 2004 Oct 2005 Change
Passengers 54,582,605 53,682,685 -1.6%
Flights 871,479 822,374 -5.6%
Revenue Passenger Miles(000) 46,192,014 45,910,199 -0.6%
Available Seat Miles(000) 62,242,679 60,511,250 -2.8%
Load Factor 74.2 75.9 1.7 points
Flight Stage Length* 588 609 3.6%
Passenger Trip Length** 846 855 1.1%

Source: Bureau of Transportation Statistics, T-100 Domestic Market and Segment

* The average non-stop distance flown per departure in miles

** The average distance flown per passenger in miles

Table 6: Top 10 Airlines, ranked by October 2005 Domestic Enplanements

Excel | CSV

Oct 2005 Rank Carrier Oct 2005 Passengers Oct 2004 Rank Oct 2004 Passengers
1 Southwest 7,571,730 1 6,899,590
2 American 6,213,660 3 6,041,460
3 Delta 5,810,108 2 6,738,373
4 United 4,612,307 4 5,102,099
5 Northwest 3,628,273 5 3,890,541
6 US Airways 2,825,077 6 3,351,645
7 Continental 2,769,157 7 2,654,994
8 America West 1,708,275 8 1,750,382
9 American Eagle 1,494,990 9 1,327,824
10 SkyWest 1,437,788 10 1,208,791

Source: Bureau of Transportation Statistics, T-100 Domestic Market

Table 7: Top 10 Airports ranked by October 2005 Domestic Enplanements

Excel | CSV

Oct 2005 Rank Airport Name Oct 2005 Passengers Oct 2004 Rank Oct 2004 Passengers
1 Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta 3,056,435 1 3,230,635
2 Chicago O'Hare 2,691,149 2 2,776,725
3 Dallas-Ft. Worth 2,141,584 3 2,197,081
4 Las Vegas McCarran 1,779,390 5 1,722,383
5 Los Angeles Int'l 1,704,210 4 1,742,868
6 Denver 1,642,863 6 1,602,858
7 Phoenix Sky Harbor 1,616,569 7 1,586,452
8 Minneapolis-St.Paul 1,340,026 8 1,360,508
9 Houston Bush Intercontinental 1,324,396 10 1,202,452
10 Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County 1,249,462 9 1,324,678

Source: Bureau of Transportation Statistics, T-100 Domestic Market