AEGEAN reports a strong start to the year with a 12% growth in passenger traffic for January and February 2018, welcoming 1.5 million passengers on board its flights.
More specifically, AEGEAN and Olympic Air carried 680 thousand passengers on domestic flights, a 9% growth compared to the same period in 2017, while passengers carried on international flights increased by 15% to 808 thousand. Total flights operated increased by 2%, hence the growth in passenger traffic stemmed mainly from higher load factors which averaged 81% from 76% in the respective 2017 period.
Traffic from the main base in Athens rose by 14%, with AEGEAN achieving a faster pace of growth compared to the overall market as the latter grew by 6.5%. More specifically, AEGEAN’s international traffic from Athens grew by 19% following a significant investment on maintaining many seasonal destinations in the winter period, contributing on the extension of the season as well as offering more direct connection choices to passengers.
Mr. Dimitris Gerogiannis, CEO of AEGEAN, commented:
«We delivered a positive performance during the first two months of 2018 in both traffic and load factors. The gradual upgrade of the tourist product in Athens, the maturity on managing our fares and network as well as our investment in reinforcing and essentially building a hub in Athens with connecting flows are contributing to better coping with the seasonality of our business. All interested parties in the tourism industry should work towards that direction for extending the season with investments, novelty, new products as well as the right support policies.
From our part, we continue to invest on the upgrade of our product and services, having delivered in the last few months of 2017 the upgraded facilities of our four lounges in Athens (2x), Thessaloniki and Larnaca. At the same time, we are adding 18 new destinations and 700,000 additional seats in 2018. The initial indications as far as demand is concerned for the summer season appear positive, despite the increased capacity added by competition.»