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Summer Travel Demand Remains High Despite Economic Slowdown

Aug 13, 2013 12:01 am

Skift Take

American Airlines’ greatest growth and expansion efforts are happening outside of the U.S. Strong summer passenger loads will keep business rolling as AA undergoes a merger with US Airways this fall.

— Samantha Shankman

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Simon Clancy  / Flickr

American Airlines 767 pushing back from the gate in LAX. Simon Clancy / Flickr

Increased flying to Asia and Latin America paid off for American Airlines, with passenger traffic and a key revenue measure both rising in July.

The airline’s parent, AMR Corp., said Monday that passenger revenue for every seat flown one mile rose about 4 percent over July 2012 to a record 14.61 cents.

That’s a closely watched figure in the airline business, and it rises when airlines fill more seats or charge higher average fares.

The figures include American and its regional affiliate, American Eagle.

Other airlines also have reported increases in the revenue figure for July, quelling concerns that the sluggish economy would dampen travel demand.

Passengers flew 13.14 billion miles on American and Eagle in July, up 2.5 percent from a year earlier. Domestic travel was about flat but international increased 5.4 percent, led by gains of 10.6 percent to Latin America and 12.5 percent in American’s smaller Asian operations.

Capacity increased 2.6 percent. American added international flights, such as service earlier this year to South Korea, and slightly decreased flying in the U.S.

The average plane was 86.9 percent full, little changed from 87 percent a year earlier.

AMR hopes to receive bankruptcy court approval this week to merge with US Airways. The merger is also being reviewed by the U.S. Justice Department.

Copyright (2013) Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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