International Airlines Group (IAG), the company behind British Airways and Iberia, saw growth in both premium and non-premium traffic in May.
Group premium traffic for the month of May grew by 1.7% compared to May 2011, while non-premium traffic grew 7.5% year-on-year.
The number of passengers carried in May rose 9.3%, or 3.6% on a like-for-like (LFL) basis to 4.81m from 4.4m in May 2011. In the first five months of 2012, the number of passengers carried was 1.9% (LFL: 0.3%) higher than in the corresponding period of 2011 at 20.68m.
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Group traffic measured in revenue passenger kilometres was up 6.6% year-on-year, or 3.8% on a LFL basis.
Group capacity measured in available seat kilometres was up 5.9% (2.5% on a LFL basis) in May.
The passenger load factor in May improved to 78.6% from 78.1% a year earlier, and was up one percentage point on a LFL basis. Year-to-date the load factor is running at 77.7%, up from 75.9% in the corresponding period of 2011 and is two percentage points higher on a LFL basis.
"Trends for June appear stronger than those in May," IAG said.
"Underlying market conditions at our London Heathrow hub continue to be firm, particularly in long haul premium. However, commercial performance at our Madrid hub has deteriorated further due to the ongoing effects of the Spanish and wider Eurozone macroeconomic conditions and, the after-effects of prolonged industrial action," the airline group added.
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