Sharjah: Air Arabia, the first and largest low-cost carrier (LCC) in the Middle East and North Africa, flew a record number of passengers in July as almost half a million escaped the summer heat to fly to one of the airline’s destinations. Statistics show that the airline carried a total of 477,839 passengers in the month, up nearly 10 per cent year-on-year, the highest number of passengers that the airline handled in a month since inception.
The airline’s seat load factor – passengers as a percentage of total seats available – stood at an impressive 85 per cent, signalling an ever growing customer demand for Air Arabia’s value-for-money services.
The airline has witnessed a steady increase in passenger traffic since the beginning of this year. In the second quarter of 2012, the low-cost pioneer carried 1.3 million passengers, an increase of over 15 per cent compared to the corresponding period in 2011.
“It is encouraging to begin the second half of the year with record passenger numbers” said Adel Ali, Group Chief Executive Officer, Air Arabia. “Nearly half a million people every month now travel more for less with Air Arabia. As we continue to witness significant customer demand, our network expansion strategy coupled with our proven business model will drive Air Arabia’s growth in the future.”
The announcement came after the carrier reported its solid second quarter 2012 financial results last week. Air Arabia’s second quarter net profit climbed 31 per cent to Dh66 million, while turnover reached 729 million, an increase of 23 per cent compared to the same period a year earlier.
Air Arabia added two new routes in the first half of 2012, with Taif in Saudi Arabia and Salalah in Oman bringing the airline’s global network to 75 destinations. The first half of 2012 also saw the delivery of three new aircraft from Airbus.