LIAT reports rise in passenger load
The financially challenged regional airline, LIAT, is reporting a significant rise in passenger loads and volumes.
The Antigua-based airline that is owned by the governments of Antigua & Barbuda, Dominica, Barbados and St Vincent and the Grenadines, said that its average load factors for the month of July were just below 76 per cent.
"Revenue per available seat mile, a key aviation performance indicator, has shown growth of 16 per cent in the past year. The airline's positive performance has resulted in the best month for LIAT in recent years with a net profit declared in July 2015," the airline said in a statement.
It said several of its routes showed "strong growth in both revenue and passenger numbers" and that of the 17 destinations it serves, Guyana, Tortola, Barbados, St Maarten and Antigua were among the top performers.
"The best performing route for LIAT was Barbados-Guyana which nearly doubled its revenue year on year, followed by Tortola-St Maarten which generated an additional 57 per cent of revenue year on year," LIAT said.
The new non-stop routes, which were launched in mid-July are also showing promise, with load factors on all routes averaging over 73 per cent, and showing positive trends, the airline said.
"This steady performance is expected to continue over the rest of the summer. The highest load factors were on the new Barbados-Trinidad and Barbados-Guyana nonstop services, achieving well over 80 per cent, and the highest yielding route was Tortola-San Juan," said regional carrier, adding that this strong performance is backed by an eight per cent improvement in daily aircraft utilisation, which is the measure of hours flown daily by LIAT's ATR fleet.