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Monday, January 19, 2009

Regionals Continue Traffic Declines

Just as the mainline regional programs posted operational declines in December and 2007, so, too, did their individual member airlines. Related Story  Bucking the trend, still is Republic Airways Holdings which reported increases and Pinnacle which is in recovery from the Northwest bankruptcy.

SkyWest Reports Deep Traffic Declines
SkyWest, Inc.
reported a 9.1 percent decrease in available seat miles (ASMs) for December, while revenue passenger miles (RPMs) decreased by 3.3 percent compared to the same period last year. The combined airlines – SkyWest and Atlantic Southeast – generated 1.7 billion ASMs and 1.3 billion RPMs for the month. Load factor was up 4.6 percentage points to 78.2 percent compared to 73.6 percent for the same period last year. Passenger boardings for December totaled 2,634,566 a 1.9 percent decrease over December 2007.
For the year, declines were half that of the December results. Enplanements were down 2.7 percent to 33.4 million while RPMs dropped 4.4 percent to 17.1 billion and ASMs declined 4.1 percent to 22 billion. Load factor dropped 0.2 points to 77.7 percent while block hours declined 4.3 percent to 1.3 million. Departures dropped 3.6 percent to 872,288.

Air Wisconsin ASMs Decline 10 Percent
Air Wisconsin’s 70 CRJs only flew 213.5 million ASMs in December, a decline of 10.1 percent. Meanwhile, RPMs dropped 5.1 percent to 146.6 million. The United Express experienced an increase in load factor of 3.70 points to 68.8 percent and enplanements dropped 5.6 percent to 393,341.
For the year, RPMs declined 2.4 percent to 2.0 billion while ASMs dropped 1.6 percent to 2.9 billion. Load factor dropped 0.60 points to 70.7 percent while enplanements declined two percent to 5,593,926.

Pinnacle Reports Dramatic Results for Both Units
Pinnacle Airline Corp’s Colgan subsidiary flew 214,816 passengers in December, up a whopping 90.2 percent from December 2007. The rest of its statistics followed a similar path with ASMs also jumping 90.2 percent to 90.8 million. RPMs rose an astonishing 149.7 percent to 52.1 million. Departures increased 3.8 percent to 9,016 and block hours jumped 14 percent to 11,790. Load factor was up 13.6 percent to 57.4 percent. Its fleet mix changed to include a drop of 19 percent for the Saab 340 operated by subsidiary Colgan to 34; 66.7 percent for Beech 1900s to 2 and an increase of 100 percent for Q400s which now stand at 15.
For the year, Colgan enplanements grew 63.3 percent to 2.5 million while RPMs increased 68.7 percent to one billion and RPMs jumped 100.1 percent to 576 million. Departures rose 7.4 percent to 121,635 and block hours increased 13.9 percent to 152,890. Load factor increased 8.5 points to 54.3 percent. The average length of a Colgan flight was 228 statute miles compared to 178 statute miles in December 2007.
Pinnacle Airlines Inc. subsidiary flew 8.8 percent more passengers in December bringing the number of enplanements to 866,033. Load factor did not change but ASMs were up 11.9 percent as were RPMs to 537.3 million and 407.3 million respectively. Departures rose 4.2 percent to 22,252 as did block hours which increased 4.6 percent to 38,642. While its fleet of CRJ 200s dropped 10.1 percent to 124, its CRJ 900 fleet jumped 1700 percent to 18.
For the year, enplanements rose four percent to 10,392,982 while ASMs rose 5.3 percent to 6.3 billion and RPMs incrased 4.8 percent to 4.8 billion. Departures grew one percent to 267,893 while block hours grew 0.9 percent to 442,911.The average length of a Pinnacle flight was 460 statute miles compared to 455 statute miles in December 2007.

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