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TI News: An information service from the National Travel & Tourism Office (NTTO)

May 08, 2015

First Quarter 2015 U.S. - International Air Passenger Traffic up Five Percent

Total International Traffic was up Five Percent in March
Asia, Caribbean. Mexico and Middle East Show Strong Growth in Q1

U.S. - International Air Traffic

International non-stop air traffic to/from the U.S.(1) totaled 47.1 million passengers through March 2015, a five percent increase over the March 2014 year-to-date period.

U.S. citizen travel (20.5 million) was up six percent and comprised 44 percent of all air traffic. Non-U.S. citizen air travelers (26.6 million) increased by five percent with market share at 57 percent.

U.S. airlines carried 24.3 million passengers, up one percent, their share dropping to 52 percent. Foreign flags carried 22.8 million passengers, up ten percent from the same period 2014.

International Passengers (mlns) % Chg y-o-y Market Share % Pt. chg.
   U.S. Citizens 20.484 6.0% 43.5% 0.3
   Non-U.S. Citizens 26.636 4.6% 56.5% -0.3
         
   U.S. Flag Carriers (3) 24.274 1.4% 51.5% -2.0
   Foreign Flag Carriers 22.847 9.6% 48.5% 2.0

The following, overseas, Canada and Mexico regions are ‘breakouts’ of international:

Overseas air traffic accounted for 33.4 million passengers, 71 percent of all international, and grew by five percent.

U.S. citizen travel (14.7 million) was up five percent and comprised 44 percent of overseas air traffic. Non-U.S. citizen air travelers (18.6 million) increased by four percent maintaining their market share at 56 percent.

U.S. airlines carried 16.6 million passengers, up one percent, their share dropping to below 50 percent. Foreign flags carried 16.8 million passengers, up eight percent from March 2014 YTD.

Overseas Regions Passengers (mlns) % Chg y-o-y Market Share % Pt. chg.
   U.S. Citizens 14.706 4.9% 44.1% 0.1
   Non-U.S. Citizens 18.648 4.4% 55.9% -0.1
         
   U.S. Flag Carriers 16.605 1.4% 49.8% -1.6
   Foreign Flag Carriers 16.750 8.0% 50.2% 1.6

Overseas regions performed as follows:

Overseas Regions Passengers (mlns) % of all
International
% Change
2015 / 2014 YTD
   Europe    10.533    22%    2.2%
   Asia    7.344    16%    4.7%
   Caribbean    5.453    12%    8.4%
   South America    3.704    8%    -0.7%
   Central America    2.878    6%    2.4%
   Middle East    2.054    4%    21.8%
   Oceania    1.112    3%    6.4%
   Africa    0.277    1%    -3.0%

China to U.S. 'Arrivals' (2) for March 2015:

  Non-U.S. Citizens
(Originating from PRC)
U.S. Citizens
(Returning to U.S.)
Total Inbound Passengers on
Non-stop Flights
Load Factor
(Estimate)
   Passengers 140,374 75.528 215,902 75.5%
   % Chg. Mar 15/14 30.6% -2.3% 16.8%  

Estimated capacity (286,044 seats) on inbound flights from PRC was up 20.5 percent year-over-year. Overall inbound passenger growth was 16.8 percent passenger growth.

North American markets accounted for 29 percent of U.S. international air traffic flows.

Canadian air traffic accounted for 7.1 million passengers, 15 percent of all international traffic, and increased by five percent.

U.S. citizen travel (1.4 million) increased 12 percent and comprised 20 percent of air traffic. Canadian, and other foreign national citizen air travelers transiting through Canada (5.7 million), increased by four percent.

U.S. flags carried 2.6 million passengers, down three percent from last year, and their share declined to 37 percent. Foreign flags carried 4.5 million passengers, up 11 percent.

Canada Region Passengers (mlns) % Chg y-o-y Market Share % Pt. chg.
   U.S. Citizens 1.394 11.7% 19.6% 1.2
   Non-U.S. Citizens 5.730 3.8% 80.4% -1.2
         
   U.S. Flag Carriers 2.646 -3.3% 37.1% -3.3
   Foreign Flag Carriers 4.478 11.0% 62.9% 3.3

Mexico air traffic accounted for 6.6 million passengers, 14 percent of all international traffic, and was up eight percent.

U.S. citizen travel (4.4 million) increased eight percent and composed 66 percent of all air traffic. Mexicans, and other foreign national air travelers (2.3 million) transiting through Mexico, increased by nine percent, with market share at 34 percent.

U.S. flags carried 5.0 million passengers, up four percent from last year, and their share dropped to 76 percent. Foreign flags carried 1.6 million passengers, up 24 percent increasing share to 24 percent.

Mexican Region Passengers (mlns) % Chg y-o-y Market Share % Pt. chg.
   U.S. Citizens 4.384 7.9% 66.0% -0.2
   Non-U.S. Citizens 2.258 8.8% 34.0% 0.2
         
   U.S. Flag Carriers 5.022 3.9% 75.6% -3.1
   Foreign Flag Carriers 1.619 24.1% 24.4% 3.1

First Quarter 2015

Top 10 Foreign Airports (Passenger Traffic to/From U.S.):
18.1 million Passengers, 38% of Total International Air Traffic

    Passengers (mlns) % Change 15/14
1. London Heathrow (LHR) 2.997 3.0%
2. Toronto (YYZ) 2.989 7.2%
3. Tokyo Narita (NRT) 2.231 -5.3%
4. Cancun (CUN) 2.209 15.0%
5. Mexico City (MEX) 1.539 5.6%
6. Incheon (ICN) 1.393 14.2%
7. Vancouver (YVR) 1.283 15.0%
8. Frankfurt (FRT) 1.280 0.7%
9. Paris/de Gaulle (CDG) 1.238 1.1%
10. Montreal (YUL) 0.940 0.8%

Top 10 U.S. Airports (Passenger Traffic to/from Foreign Airports):
31.8 million Passengers, 67% of Total Air Traffic

    Passengers (mlns) % Change 15/14
1. New York (JFK) 6.014 4.0%
2. Miami (MIA) 5.264 2.6%
3. Los Angeles (LAX) 4.583 5.1%
4. Newark (EWR) 2.652 3.1%
5. Atlanta (ATL) 2.588 3.5%
6. Chicago (ORD) 2.538 2.1%
7. Houston (IAH) 2.479 4.8%
8. San Francisco (SFO) 2.386 6.4%
9. Dallas-Ft Worth (DFW) 1.770 8.5%
10. Fort Lauderdale (FLL) 1.516 23.3%

Top 10 Airlines(3) Serving U.S. International Non-Stop Markets:
27.0 million Passengers, 57% of Total Air Traffic

    Passengers (mlns) % Change 15/14
1. United Airlines 7.014 -0.2%
2. Delta Air Lines 5.452 5.6%
3. American Airlines 5.283 -2.5%
4. US Airways 1.758 -5.2%
5. British Airways 1.540 2.8%
6. JetBlue 1.464 15.4%
7. West Jet 1.327 3.7%
8. Air Canada (mainline) 1.170 -19.7%
9. Lufthansa 1.088 1.9%
10. AeroMexico 0.894 12.9%

Monthly % changes:
January 2015 up 5.4 percent, February up 5.8 percent and March up 4.5 percent (See graph).

Later this month NTTO will publish the March U.S. Citizen Outbound, all mode travel. (U.S. Citizen outbound is a component in the estimation of U.S. travel ‘imports’. For current 2015, February see: https://travel.trade.gov/view/m-2015-O-001/index.html

A description of the “APIS” program: https://travel.trade.gov/research/programs/i92/index.html includes subscription prices for detail reports in excel and adobe.

U.S. Department of Commerce
International Trade Administration
National Travel and Tourism Office (NTTO)
1401 Constitution Avenue NW, Room 10003
Washington, D.C. 20230
Phone: (202) 482-0140
Website: https://travel.trade.gov/
Email: ntto@trade.gov

(1) These reflect non-stop air-only data. A portion of the non-stop passenger traffic to i.e., 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. Also, some traffic to the Middle East will connect through the U.A.E. The adjustment to these regions, reflecting visitation (1+ nights), occurs after year-end data is compiled.

(2) Non-stop air arrivals from China (PRC). Non-U.S. citizens assumed to be mostly Chinese citizens. All inbound from China, including U.S. citizens returning, compared to available seats (DIIO/Innovata) to estimate load factor. . Note: PRC travelers also connect via Asian hubs or Canada when traveling to U.S.

(3) Numbers for U.S. carriers varies from what has been reported by Airlines for America. A4A reported mainline numbers for most of their member carriers. A4A includes Canada in 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-92APIS, however is not inclusive of Pacific inter-port or other ‘beyond’ traffic

Performance metrics reported are:

  • Total international 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.