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January 2010 Airline Traffic Data: System Traffic Up 1.5 Percent from January 2009

January 2010 Airline Traffic Data: System Traffic Up 1.5 Percent from January 2009

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BTS 18-10
Dave Smallen
202-366-5568

Thursday, April 15, 2010 - U.S. airlines carried 52.6 million scheduled domestic and international passengers in January 2010, 1.5 percent more than they did in January 2009, the U.S. Department of Transportations Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) today reported in a release of preliminary data (Table 1). The January 2010 passenger total was 8.8 percent below that of January 2008 (Table 2).

BTS, a part of DOTs Research and Innovative Technology Administration, in a release of preliminary data, reported that U.S. airlines carried 1.6 percent more domestic passengers and 1.2 percent more international passengers in January 2010 than in January 2009 (Tables 5, 9). The system, domestic and international load factors in January 2010 were all the highest ever for the month of January.

Additional traffic numbers can be found on the BTS website in the Airline Industry box. Click on a link in the column on the right. For more historic numbers, see Traffic on the BTS website.

Top Airlines in January

In January, Delta Air Lines carried more total system passengers than any other U.S. airline (Table 3). Southwest Airlines carried the most domestic passengers and American Airlines carried the most international passengers in January (Table 7, 11). See notes under Tables 3, 7 and 11 for more details on Deltas January report.

Top Airports in January

More total system and domestic passengers boarded planes in January 2010 at Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International than at any other U.S. airport (Tables 4, 8). More international passengers boarded U.S. carriers at Miami International than at any other U.S. airport (Table 12).

Flights Operated

U.S. carriers operated 761,900 domestic and international flights in January 2010, 2.0 percent fewer than in January 2009 (Table 1). Domestic flights were down 2.2 percent from January 2009 while international flights declined 0.3 percent (Tables 5, 9).

For other comparisons from January 2009 to January 2010, see the following tables:

System Comparisons (Tables 1-4)

Table 1 (January and previous calendar years):
Revenue passenger-miles (RPMs)
Available seat-miles (ASMs)
Passenger load factor
Flight stage length
Passenger trip length

Table 2
System scheduled enplanements on U.S. airlines by month since January 2008

Airline Rankings

Table 3
January: Top 10 airlines by scheduled passenger enplanements

Airport Rankings

Table 4
January: Top 10 airports by scheduled passenger enplanements on U.S. airlines

Domestic Air Travel (Tables 5-8)

Table 5 (January and previous calendar years):
Domestic revenue passenger-miles (RPMs)
Domestic available seat-miles (ASMs)
Domestic passenger load factor
Domestic flight stage length
Domestic passenger trip length

Table 6
Domestic scheduled enplanements on U.S. airlines by month since January 2008

Airline Rankings

Table 7
January: Top 10 domestic airlines by scheduled passenger enplanements

Airport Rankings

Table 8
January: Top 10 domestic airports by scheduled passenger enplanements

International Air Travel (Tables 9-12)

Table 9 (January and previous calendar years):
International revenue passenger-miles on U.S. airlines (RPMs)
International available seat-miles on U.S. airlines (ASMs)
International passenger load factor on U.S. airlines
International flight stage length on U.S. airlines
International passenger trip length on U.S. airlines

Table 10
International scheduled enplanements on U.S. airlines by month since January 2008

Table 11
January: Top 10 U.S. airlines by scheduled international passenger enplanements

Airport Rankings

Table 12
January: Top 10 airports by scheduled international passenger enplanements on U.S. airlines

Reporting Notes

Data are compiled from monthly reports filed with BTS by commercial U.S. air carriers detailing operations, passenger traffic and freight traffic. This release includes data received by BTS from 83 carriers as of April 6 for U.S. carrier scheduled civilian operations. Go to http://www.transtats.bts.gov/releaseinfo.asp for the complete list of reporting and non-reporting carriers. U.S. carriers foreign point-to-point flights are included in system and international totals. To create a customized table for passengers, flights, RPMs, ASMs and other data, including non-scheduled service, go to http://www.bts.gov/programs/airline_information/air_carrier_traffic_statistics/.

Traffic numbers are available on the BTS website at TranStats, the Intermodal Transportation Database, at http://transtats.bts.gov. Click on "Aviation." For system passengers, RPMs and ASMs by carrier through January, click on "Air Carrier Summary Data (Form 41 and 298C Summary Data)," and then click on "Schedule T-1." Use crosstabs to find scheduled service.

For domestic numbers through January and international numbers through October by origin as well as by carrier, after clicking on "Aviation," click on "Air Carrier Statistics (Form 41 Traffic)." Click on "T-100 Market" for system passenger numbers, "T-100 Domestic Market" for domestic or "T-100 International Market" for international. For flights, stage length and trip length, use the appropriate T-100 Segment database. Use crosstabs to find scheduled service.

TranStats system and international totals do not include U.S. carriers foreign point-to-point flights. For January, U.S. carriers reported 233,849 foreign point-to-point passengers.

Data are subject to revision. BTS has scheduled May 13 for the release of February traffic data.

Table 1: Scheduled System (Domestic and International) Airline Travel on U.S. Airlines

Excel | CSV

  Monthly Previous Calendar Years
Jan 2009 Jan 2010 Change % 2008 2009 Change %
Passengers (in millions) 51.8 52.6 1.5 743.3 703.9 -5.3
Flights (in thousands) 777.9 761.9 -2.0 10,223.9 9,552.5 -6.6
Revenue Passenger Miles (in billions) 57.4 58.7 2.2 812.4 769.5 -5.3
Available Seat-Miles (in billions) 78.7 77.6 -1.4 1,021.3 957.2 -6.3
Load Factor* 72.9 75.6 2.7 79.5 80.4 0.9
Flight Stage Length** 720.3 729.0 1.2 718.9 717.4 -0.2
Passenger Trip Length*** 1,108.5 1,116.3 0.7 1,092.9 1,093.1 0.0

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

*Change in load factor points

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

*** The average distance flown per passenger in miles

Note: Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Table 2: Total System (Domestic and International) Scheduled Enplanements on U.S. Airlines

Passenger numbers in millions (000,000)

Excel | CSV

  2008 2009 2008-2009 Pct. Change 2010 2009-2010 Pct. Change
January 57.7 51.8 -10.2 52.6 1.5
February 57.1 49.8 -12.6    
March 67.7 61.0 -10.0    
April 63.2 59.5 -5.8    
May 66.0 59.7 -9.5    
June 68.0 63.6 -6.5    
July 70.5 68.1 -3.4    
August 67.8 65.0 -4.1    
September 54.2 54.7 0.8    
October 59.7 58.8 -1.4    
November 54.1 54.8 1.5    
December 57.4 57.0 -0.6    
Yr. Total 743.3 703.9 -5.3    

Source: Bureau of Transportation Statistics, T-100 Market

Note: Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Table 3: Top 10 U.S. Airlines, ranked by January 2009 System* Scheduled Enplanements

Passenger numbers in millions (000,000)

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Jan 2010 Rank Carrier Jan 2010 Enplaned Passengers Jan 2009 Rank Jan 2009 Enplaned Passengers Pct. Change 2009-2010
1 Delta** 7.832 3 5.262 48.8
2 Southwest 7.576 1 6.994 8.3
3 American 6.699 2 6.697 0.0
4 United 4.100 4 4.212 -2.7
5 US Airways 3.883 5 4.048 -4.1
6 Continental 3.320 6 3.249 2.2
7 JetBlue 1.749 9 1.660 5.4
8 SkyWest 1.743 10 1.496 16.5
9 AirTran 1.710 8 1.667 2.6
10 American Eagle 1.182 12 1.071 10.4

Source: Bureau of Transportation Statistics, T-100 Market

* System equals domestic plus international

** Delta filed separate passenger numbers for Delta and Northwest for January. BTS combined the numbers because Delta began operating in January with a single operating certificate following completion of the merger between the two airlines. BTS TranStats database will show separate T-100, T-1, T-2 and T-3 traffic numbers for Delta and Northwest until Delta refiles a joint report. Northwest reported 3.132 million system passengers in January 2009.

Note: Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Note: For previous rankings see BTS Air Traffic Press Releases

Table 4: Top 10 U.S. Airports ranked by January 2009 System* Scheduled Enplanements on U.S. Airlines**

Passenger numbers in millions (000,000)

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Jan 2010 Rank Airport Jan 2010 Enplaned Passengers Jan 2009 Rank Jan 2009 Enplaned Passengers Pct. Change 2009-2010
1 Atlanta 3.027 1 3.162 -4.3
2 Chicago O'Hare 2.063 2 2.008 2.8
3 Dallas/Ft. Worth 1.995 3 1.939 2.9
4 Denver 1.784 4 1.726 3.3
5 Los Angeles 1.671 5 1.554 7.5
6 Phoenix 1.463 6 1.437 1.8
7 Houston Bush 1.426 7 1.405 1.5
8 Las Vegas 1.354 8 1.362 -0.6
9 Charlotte 1.303 9 1.302 0.0
10 Orlando 1.253 10 1.225 2.3

Source: Bureau of Transportation Statistics, T-100 Market

* System equals domestic plus international

** Numbers do not include international enplanements on foreign carriers

Note: Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Note: For previous rankings see BTS Air Traffic Press Releases

Table 5: Domestic Scheduled Airline Travel on U.S. Airlines

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  Monthly Previous Calendar Years
Jan 2009 Jan 2010 Change % 2008 2009 Change %
Passengers (in millions) 44.8 45.5 1.6 651.7 618.1 -5.2
Flights (in thousands) 709.0 693.3 -2.2 9,373.7 8,753.1 -6.6
Revenue Passenger Miles (in billions) 39.3 40.3 2.6 568.2 539.1 -5.1
Available Seat-Miles (in billions) 54.0 53.8 -0.3 712.3 664.7 -6.7
Load Factor* 72.8 74.9 2.1 79.8 81.1 1.3
Flight Stage Length** 618.5 628.8 1.7 622.4 618.5 -0.6
Passenger Trip Length*** 876.9 885.7 1.0 871.9 872.1 0.0

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

*Change in load factor points

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

*** The average distance flown per passenger in miles

Note: Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Table 6: Domestic Scheduled Enplanements on U.S. Airlines

Passenger numbers in millions (000,000)

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  2008 2009 2008-2009 Pct. Change 2010 2009-2010 Pct. Change
January 50.2 44.8 -10.8 45.5 1.6
February 50.1 43.7 -12.9    
March 59.2 53.5 -9.6    
April 55.6 52.2 -6.1    
May 58.0 52.9 -8.8    
June 59.6 55.9 -6.2    
July 61.4 59.5 -3.2    
August 59.0 56.6 -4.1    
September 47.7 48.2 1.2    
October 53.0 52.3 -1.3    
November 47.7 48.6 2.0    
December 50.2 49.9 0.7    
Yr. Total 651.7 618.1 -5.2    

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

Note: Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Table 7: Top 10 U.S. Airlines, ranked by January 2009 Domestic Scheduled Enplanements

Passenger numbers in millions (000,000)

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Jan 2010 Rank Carrier Jan 2010 Enplaned Passengers Jan 2009 Rank Jan 2009 Enplaned Passengers Pct. Change 2009-2010
1 Southwest 7.576 1 6.994 8.3
2 Delta* 6.270 3 4.351 44.1
3 American 5.071 2 5.047 0.5
4 US Airways 3.380 4 3.532 -4.3
5 United 3.257 5 3.379 -3.6
6 Continental 2.296 7 2.325 -1.2
7 AirTran 1.665 8 1.657 0.5
8 SkyWest 1.642 10 1.408 16.6
9 JetBlue 1.537 9 1.513 1.6
10 American Eagle 1.105 11 1.000 10.5

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

* Delta filed separate passenger numbers for Delta and Northwest for January. BTS combined the numbers because Delta began operating in January with a single operating certificate following completion of the merger between the two airlines. BTS TranStats database will show separate T-100, T-1, T-2 and T-3 traffic numbers for Delta and Northwest until Delta refiles a joint report. Northwest reported 2.362 million domestic passengers in January 2009.

Note: Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Note: For previous rankings see BTS Air Traffic Press Releases

Table 8: Top 10 U.S. Airports, ranked by January 2009 Domestic Scheduled Enplanements

Passenger numbers in millions (000,000)

Excel | CSV

Jan 2010 Rank Airport Jan 2010 Enplaned Passengers Jan 2009 Rank Jan 2009 Enplaned Passengers Pct. Change 2009-2010
1 Atlanta 2.731 1 2.849 -4.1
2 Chicago O'Hare 1.839 3 1.780 3.3
3 Dallas/Ft. Worth 1.829 2 1.784 2.6
4 Denver 1.726 4 1.666 3.6
5 Los Angeles 1.536 5 1.431 7.4
6 Phoenix 1.394 6 1.368 1.9
7 Las Vegas 1.353 7 1.351 0.2
8 Orlando 1.238 9 1.217 1.8
9 Charlotte 1.216 8 1.217 -0.1
10 Houston Bush 1.158 10 1.152 0.5

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

Note: Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Note: For previous rankings see BTS Air Traffic Press Releases

Table 9: International Scheduled Airline Travel on U.S. Airlines

Excel | CSV

  Monthly Previous Calendar Years
Jan 2009 Jan 2010 Change % 2008 2009 Change %
Passengers (in millions) 7.0 7.1 1.2 91.6 85.8 -6.3
Flights (in thousands) 68.8 68.6 -0.3 850.3 799.4 -6.0
Revenue Passenger Miles (in billions) 18.1 18.4 1.5 244.1 230.4 -5.6
Available Seat-Miles (in billions) 24.7 23.8 -3.9 309.0 292.5 -5.4
Load Factor* 73.3 77.3 4.0 79.0 78.8 -0.2
Flight Stage Length** 1,769.6 1,741.6 -1.6 1,783.1 1,801.0 1.0
Passenger Trip Length*** 2,594.1 2,600.4 0.2 2,665.0 2,684.1 0.7

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

*Change in load factor points

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

*** The average distance flown per passenger in miles

Note: Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Table 10: International Scheduled Enplanements on U.S. Airlines

Passenger numbers in millions (000,000)

Excel | CSV

  2008 2009 2008-2009 Pct. Change 2010 2009-2010 Pct. Change
January 7.5 7.0 -6.4 7.1 1.2
February 6.9 6.2 -11.1    
March 8.5 7.4 -12.5    
April 7.6 7.3 -3.8    
May 8.0 6.8 -14.8    
June 8.4 7.7 -8.6    
July 9.1 8.6 -4.8    
August 8.9 8.5 -4.5    
September 6.6 6.4 -1.7    
October 6.7 6.5 -2.8    
November 6.4 6.3 -2.3    
December 7.1 7.2 0.3    
Yr. Total 91.6 85.8 -6.3    

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

Note: Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Table 11: Top 10 U.S. Airlines, ranked by January 2009 International Scheduled Enplanements

Passenger numbers in thousands (000)

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Jan 2010 Rank Carrier Jan 2010 Enplaned Passengers Jan 2009 Rank Jan 2009 Enplaned Passengers Pct. Change 2009-2010
1 American 1,627.4 1 1,649.8 -1.4
2 Delta* 1,562.4 3 910.8 71.5
3 Continental 1,023.7 2 924.2 10.8
4 United 842.7 4 832.6 1.2
5 US Airways 502.6 6 515.8 -2.6
6 JetBlue 212.7 8 147.1 44.6
7 Alaska 154.1 7 153.5 0.4
8 ExpressJet 151.0 9 130.2 15.9
9 Executive 109.3 11 93.0 17.6
10 SkyWest 101.3 13 88.9 13.9

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

* Delta filed separate passenger numbers for Delta and Northwest for January. BTS combined the numbers because Delta began operating in January with a single operating certificate following completion of the merger between the two airlines. BTS TranStats database will show separate T-100, T-1, T-2 and T-3 traffic numbers for Delta and Northwest until Delta refiles a joint report. Northwest reported 769.5 thousand domestic passengers in January 2009.

Note: Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Note: For previous rankings see BTS Air Traffic Press Releases

Table 12: Top 10 U.S. Airports, ranked by January 2009 International Scheduled Enplanements on U.S. Airlines*

Passenger numbers in thousands (000)

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Jan 2010 Rank Airport Jan 2010 Enplaned Passengers Jan 2009 Rank Jan 2009 Enplaned Passengers Pct. Change 2009-2010
1 Miami 433.6 1 430.1 0.8
2 Newark 310.1 4 274.9 12.8
3 New York JFK 299.1 3 293.6 1.9
4 Atlanta 295.7 2 312.6 -5.4
5 Houston Bush 268.4 5 252.8 6.2
6 Chicago O'Hare 223.7 6 227.3 -1.6
7 Dallas/Ft. Worth 165.9 7 155.9 6.4
8 Los Angeles 134.8 8 123.5 9.2
9 Washington Dulles 123.4 9 117.8 4.7
10 San Francisco 107.0 10 112.5 -4.9

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

* Numbers do not include international enplanements on foreign carriers

Note: Percent changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Note: For previous rankings see BTS Air Traffic Press Releases