The total number of passengers Air New Zealand carried in January fell as weaker long haul and domestic operations overshadowed improved metrics on the trans-Tasman route.
Air New Zealand says it has carried 980,000 passengers in the previous month, down 1% compared to the same month last year.
Total revenue passenger kilometres (RPKs) fell 1.3% on the same capacity with group load factor dropping 1.1 percentage points.
The airline told analysts and investors in November last year it’s aiming for a $100 million profit improvement by 2015 from long haul flights, which are now an under-performing part of the company.
Long haul passenger numbers recorded Airline’s biggest declines in January, falling 4.3%, compared to the same month a year ago with a 0.7% capacity increase contributing to the headline decline.
This was lead by passenger declines on the North America and UK route, which fell 3.4% compared to January last year, as capacity fell 2.1% and load factor dropping 1.3 percentage points to 89.2%.
The airline said last year’s Christchurch and Japan earthquakes continued to impact its Asian operations, with RPKs falling by 1.8% on the Asia, Japan and UK route, with capacity increasing 4.8% and load factor falling by 5.5 percentage points to 82.8%.
Short haul passenger numbers fell 0.4% in January last year, while a fall in capacity saw RPKs rise 1.6% and load factor increased 1.9 percentage points to 83.8%.
January’s passenger traffic on the profitable trans-Tasman route rose 0.9% compared to last year on the back of a 1.2% decrease in capacity.
Compared to last January year to date, short haul yields were up 1.7%with long haul yields being up by 4.3%. Removing the impact of foreign exchange, Group-wide yields were up 5.8%.