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TI News: An information service from the Office of Travel & Tourism Industries (OTTI)

January 10, 2013

October 2012 U.S.-International Air Passenger Traffic, 14.0 Million, Up 3 Percent

October Year-to-Date Total U.S.-International Air Traffic Up Seven Percent
Foreign Citizen and Foreign Flag Traffic Growth Slightly Outpaced U.S. Citizens and Carriers

Performance metrics reported are:

  • Total air travel (arrivals + departures),
  • U.S. citizen and foreign citizen air travelers,
  • U.S. flag and foreign flag carriers,
  • Top U.S. and foreign airports.

Summary of January through October 2012:

International air traffic to/from the United States (1) totaled 149.6 million passengers from January through October 2012, a seven percent increase over the first ten months of 2011.

U.S. citizen air travel (66.7 million) increased four percent and comprised 45 percent of all air traffic. Foreign national (non-U.S. citizen) air travelers (82.9 million) increased by nine percent, increasing share of the total market from 54 to 55 percent.

U.S. airlines carried 80.6 million passengers, up five percent, however their share dropped one percentage point to 54 percent. Foreign flags carried 69.1 million passengers, up 10 percent from January-October 2011, with their share increasing to 46 percent.

U.S. - International Passengers (mlns) % Chg y-o-y Market Share % Pt change
   U.S. Citizens 66.720 4% 45% -1
   Foreign Nationals 82.907 9% 55% +1
         
   U.S. Flag Carriers (2) 80.571 5% 54% -1
   Foreign Flag Carriers 69.056 10% 46% +1

October air traffic was up three percent from October 2011, disclosing slower growth.

International is the total of overseas, Canada and Mexico regions, as follows:

Overseas air traffic accounted for 112.5 million passengers, 75 percent of all international air traffic for year-to-date.

U.S. citizen travel (51.1 million) increased four percent and comprised 45 percent of all overseas air traffic. Foreign national air travelers (61.4 million) increased by nine percent, increasing market share to 55 percent, a two percentage point increase in share between 2011 and 2012.

U.S. airlines carried 58.1 million passengers, up six percent, and their share remained at 52 percent. Foreign flags carried 54.4 million passengers, up nine percent from the first ten months of 2011. Their traffic share remained at 48 percent.

U.S. - Overseas Regions Passengers (mlns) % Chg y-o-y Market Share % Pt change
   U.S. Citizens 51.071 4% 46% -2
   Foreign Nationals 56.127 9% 55% +2
         
   U.S. Flag Carriers 58.102 6% 52% 0
   Foreign Flag Carriers 54.399 9% 48% 0

Total air traffic to/from overseas regions for the year performed as follows:

Overseas Regions Passengers (mlns) % Chg from
Oct 2011 year-to-date
   Europe    45.914    4%
   Asia    22.457    12%
   Caribbean    16.018    6%
   South America    10.962    8%
   Central America    7.494    10%
   Middle East    5.134    9%
   Oceania    3.346    8%
   Africa    1.176    12%
   Total Overseas    112.501    7%

North American markets (Canada and Mexico) accounted for 25 percent of U.S. international air traffic flows.

U.S.-Canada air traffic accounted for 20.8 million passengers, 14 percent of all international traffic, and was up seven percent year-to-date.

U.S. citizen travel (5.7 million) increased five percent and comprised only 27 percent of air traffic in the market. Canadian, and other foreign national citizen air travelers transiting through Canada (15.1 million), increased by eight percent with their market share increasing one point to 73 percent.

U.S. flags carried 9.8 million passengers, up two percent, and their share dropped from 49 to 47 percent. Foreign flags carried 11.1 million passengers, up 12 percent increasing their share to 53 percent.

U.S. - Canada Passengers (mlns) % Chg y-o-y Market Share % Pt change
   U.S. Citizens 5.688 5% 27% -1
   Foreign Nationals 15.142 8% 73% +1
         
   U.S. Flag Carriers 9.767 2% 47% -2
   Foreign Flag Carriers 11.063 12% 53% +2

U.S. - Mexico air traffic accounted for 16.3 million passengers, 11 percent of all U.S. - international traffic, and was up six percent.

U.S. citizen travel (10.0 million) increased three percent and comprised 61 percent of all air traffic. Mexicans, and other foreign national air travelers (6.3 million) transiting through Mexico, increased by 13 percent increasing their market share to 39 percent.

U.S. flags carried 12.7 million passengers, up two percent from last year, and their share dropped from 81 to 78 percent. Foreign flags carried 3.6 million passengers, up 27 percent increasing share to 22 percent.

U.S. - Mexico Passengers (mlns) % Chg y-o-y Market Share % Pt change
   U.S. Citizens 9.962 3% 61% -2
   Foreign Nationals 6.635 13% 39% +2
         
   U.S. Flag Carriers 12.703 2% 78% -3
   Foreign Flag Carriers 3.594 27% 22% +3

Top 10 Foreign Airports (Passenger Traffic to/from U.S.) October 2012 YTD:
Accounted for 40 Percent of U.S. - International Air Traffic

    Passengers (millions)
1. London Heathrow (LHR) 11.961
2. Toronto (YYZ) 8.722
3. Tokyo Narita (NRT) 8.040
4. Frankfurt (FRT) 5.661
5. Paris/de Gaulle (CDG) 5.278
6. Cancun (CUN) 4.832
7. Mexico City (MEX) 4.408
8. Incheon (ICT) 3.969
9. Vancouver (YVR) 3.772
10. Amsterdam (AMS) 3.764
    60.407

Top 10 U.S. Airports (Passenger Traffic to/from Foreign Airports) October 2012 YTD:
Accounted for 70 Percent of All U.S. - International Air Traffic

    Passengers (Millions)
1. New York (JFK) 21.378
2. Miami (MIA) 15.845
3. Los Angeles (LAX) 14.432
4. Newark (EWR) 9.776
5. Chicago (ORD) 9.092
6. Atlanta (ATL) 8.314
7. San Francisco (SFO) 7.959
8. Houston (IAH) 7.323
9. Washington Dulles (IAD) 5.630
10. Dallas-Ft Worth (DFW) 4.991
    104.741

Top 10 Airlines Serving U.S. International Non-Stop Markets October 2012 YTD:
Accounted for 61 Percent of All U.S. - International Air Traffic
Down from 62 Percent September 2012 YTD

    Passengers
(Millions)
1. United Airlines (UA/CO)* 24.697
2. American Airlines (AA) 18.299
3. Delta Air Lines (DL) 17.122
4. US Airways (US) 6.828
5. British Airways (BA) 5.657
6. Air Canada (AC) 5.518
7. Lufthansa (LH) 4.453
8. Jet Blue Airways (JB) 3.498
9. Air France (AF) 3.015
10. West Jet (WJ) 2.921
    92.008

* United Airlines and Continental merged operations on March 7th

In the near future OTTI will publish the October 2012 U.S. Citizen Outbound report, which contains total monthly travel (all modes) to Canada and Mexico.
See: https://travel.trade.gov/view/m-2012-O-001/index.html.

A description of OTTI’s program based on DHS APIS/ “I-92” data: http://tinet.ita.doc.gov/research/programs/i92/index.html includes subscription prices for detailed country and port level reports which are available in Excel and Adobe. See actual report: http://tinet.ita.doc.gov/research/programs/i92/2006_I92_Air_Travel_Statistics.pdf

U.S. Department of Commerce
International Trade Administration
Office of Travel and Tourism Industries (OTTI)
1401 Constitution Avenue NW, Room 10003
Washington, D.C. 20230
Phone: (202) 482-0140
Website: www.tinet.ita.doc.gov
Email: otti@trade.gov


(1) This reflects non-stop air-only data. A portion of the non-stop passenger traffic to Europe will not ‘visit’ Europe, but will connect through one of Europe’s airline hubs (LHR, AMS, FRA, CDG, MAD, etc.) to Africa and the Middle East. The adjustment to these regions, reflecting visitation (1+ nights), occurs after year-end data is compiled.

(2) Numbers for U.S. carriers slightly exceed what has been reported by Airlines for America (A4A). A4A reports mainline numbers for most of their member carriers. A4A classifies Canadian air travel as ‘Domestic.’ The DHS-I92/APIS data includes all carriers with international service to/from the U.S. including regional carriers, both affiliated and non-affiliated, and general aviation. The I-92/APIS however is not inclusive of Pacific inter-port or other ‘beyond’ traffic.