Although this represented a slowdown compared to February’s 5.6% year-over-year traffic increase, cumulative traffic growth for the first quarter of 2014 was 5.6%, a slight improvement over the 5.2% overall growth achieved in 2013.
“After a number of very strong months, we are seeing a slowing of demand growth. The strong performance of advanced economies, nevertheless, is likely to support the continued growth of traffic in the coming months,” said Tony Tyler, director-general of the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
International passenger traffic rose 2.6% in March, a significant slowdown compared to the 5.4% increase in February.
Capacity rose 5.5% and load factor fell 2.3 percentage points to 78%. Most regions experienced a slowdown in year-on-year growth rates.
The growth of domestic markets slowed in March, rising 4% on year, compared to 5.8% in February, but there was significant variation among the largest markets. With capacity up 4.9%, load factor slipped 0.8 percentage points to 80.5%.