Airline Traffic Data

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2018 Traffic Data for U.S Airlines and Foreign Airlines U.S. Flights

Release Number: 
10-19
Date: Thursday, March 21, 2019

U.S. airlines and foreign airlines serving the U.S. carried an all-time high of 1.0 billion systemwide (domestic and international) scheduled service passengers in 2018, 4.8 percent more than the previous record high of 965.4 million reached in 2017. The year-over-year systemwide increase resulted from a 4.9 percent rise in the number of passengers on domestic flights (777.9 million passengers in 2018) and 4.4 percent growth in passengers on U.S. and foreign airlines’ flights to and from the U.S. (233.6 million passengers in 2018) (Tables 1, 1A, 5, 9). Systemwide passengers include those on scheduled domestic flights those on scheduled flights to and from the United States.

YearTotalDomesticInternational
2003700.9583.3117.6
2004763.7629.8133.9
2005800.8657.3143.6
2006808.1658.4149.7
2007835.5679.2156.3
2008809.8651.7158.1
2009767.8618.1149.7
2010787.5629.5157.9
2011802.1638.2163.9
2012813.1642.3170.8
2013825.3645.7179.6
2014851.8662.8189.0
2015896.6696.0200.6
2016932.0720.0212.0
2017965.4741.7223.7
20181,011.5777.9233.6
Source: 

Nextstagesolutions, T-100 Market (All Carriers)

SOURCE for Recession Dates: National Bureau of Economic Research,

U.S. airlines carried 4.9 percent more passengers on domestic flights and 3.1 percent more passengers on international flights in 2018 than in 2017 for a systemwide increase of 4.7 percent. Foreign airlines carried 5.6 percent more passengers to and from the U.S. than in 2017. The 233.6 million passengers on international flights to and from the U.S. was a record high, exceeding the previous high set in 2017 (Tables 1A, 1B, 5, 9).

This annual release includes preliminary data on U.S. carrier scheduled domestic and international service, including from one foreign point to another foreign point, and foreign carrier scheduled international service to and from the U.S. BTS monthly air traffic releases include data on U.S. carrier scheduled service only.

Airlines with Most Passengers in 2018
Southwest Airlines carried more total system passengers in 2018 than any other U.S. airline. American Airlines carried more passengers on international flights to and from the U.S. in 2018 than any other U.S. or foreign carrier. British Airways carried the most passengers on flights to and from the U.S. of any foreign airline (Tables 3, 7, 11).
 
U.S. Airports with Most Passengers in 2018
More total system passengers boarded planes in 2018 at Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International than at any other U.S. airport. More passengers boarded international flights at New York John F. Kennedy than at any other U.S. airport (Tables 4, 8, 12).
 
Load Factor and Capacity
From 2017 to 2018, systemwide demand, measured in Revenue Passenger-Miles, (RPMs) grew by 5.2 percent while capacity, measured in Available Seat-Miles (ASMs), grew by 4.6 percent. As a result, load factor, which measures the use of capacity, rose 0.5 points from 82.5 to 83.0 (Table 1). 

Domestic load factor fell 0.1 points as demand, measured in RPMs, rose 5.4 percent, slightly less than the 5.5 percent growth in capacity measured in ASMs (Table 5).

Demand on international flights, measured in RPMs, rose 5.0 percent, more than the 3.7 percent growth in capacity measured in ASMs. The result was a 1.0 point rise in the international load factor to 81.7 from 80.6 in 2017 (Table 9).

For annual airline and airport statistics, the accompanying Tables 1 through 4 provide combined domestic and international travel statistics, Tables 5 through 8 provide domestic travel statistics and Tables 9 through 12 provide international travel statistics.

Reporting Notes
Data are compiled from monthly reports filed with BTS by commercial U.S. and foreign air carriers detailing operations, passenger traffic and freight traffic. This release includes data received by BTS from 215 carriers as of March 13 for U.S. and foreign carrier scheduled civilian operations.

Go to the complete list of . Figure 1 numbers begin with 2003, the first full year of data following a reporting change that went into effect in October 2002. U.S. carriers’ foreign point-to-point flights are included in system and international totals. To create a customized table for U.S. carrier passengers, flights, RPMs, ASMs and other data, including non-scheduled service, go to .

For additional scheduled service numbers for U.S. and foreign airlines, by airline and by airport, see , , , and .

Traffic numbers are available on the BTS website at . Click on “Aviation.” For U.S. carrier systemwide passengers, RPMs and ASMs by carrier through December, click on “Air Carrier Summary Data (Form 41 and 298C Summary Data),” and then click on “Schedule T-1.” Use crosstabs to find scheduled service.

For domestic numbers through December and international numbers through September by origin as well as by carrier, click on “Aviation,” then click on “Air Carrier Statistics (Form 41 Traffic).”  Click on “T-100 Market” for system passenger numbers, “T-100 Domestic Market” for domestic or “T-100 International Market” for international.  For flights, stage length and trip length, use the appropriate T-100 Segment database. Use crosstabs to find scheduled service.

Complete international data for the full year 2018 will be released on June 13.

None of the data are from samples so measures of statistical significance do not apply. Data in this press release are not seasonally adjusted.

Annual
20172018Change %
Passengers (in millions)965.41,011.54.8
Flights (in thousands)9,761.410,012.32.6
Revenue Passenger Miles (in billions)1,436.81,511.75.2
Available Seat-Miles (in billions)1,742.41,822.04.6
Load Factor*82.583.00.5
Flight Stage Length**984.4995.81.2
Passenger Trip Length***1,488.31,494.60.4
Notes: 
* Change in load factor points
** The average non-stop distance flown per departure in miles
*** The average distance flown per passenger in miles
Note: Percentage changes based on numbers prior to rounding.
Source: 

Nextstagesolutions, T-100 Market and Segment

Passenger numbers in millions (000,000)
20172018Change %
U.S. Carrier Domestic741.7777.94.9
International107.7111.13.1
System849.4889.04.7
Foreign CarrierTo and From U.S. 116.0122.55.6
Total 965.41,011.54.8
Source: 

Nextstagesolutions, T-100 Market

Passenger numbers in millions (000,000)
Destination
DomesticForeign
OriginDomesticDomestic carriers785.5Domestic carriers55.3
Foreign CarriersN/AForeign Carriers63.0
ForeignDomestic carriers55.4Domestic carriers0.6
Foreign Carriers62.5Foreign Carriers*N/A
Notes: 

* Foreign carriers do not report to the Nextstagesolutions on flights without a U.S. origin or destination

Source: 

Nextstagesolutions, T-100 Market (All Carriers)

Passenger numbers in millions (000,000)
201620172016-2017 Pct. Change20182017-2018 Pct. Change
January69.171.73.773.72.8
February65.665.80.369.86.0
March79.181.93.686.35.4
April75.679.95.683.64.7
May80.783.43.387.95.5
June84.387.53.892.35.5
July87.791.34.296.15.2
August84.388.75.393.04.8
September75.974.6-1.678.55.1
October78.782.34.585.33.7
November75.078.44.682.14.6
December77.379.93.482.93.8
Yr. Total933.1965.43.51,011.54.8
Notes: 

Percentage changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Source: 

Nextstagesolutions, T-100 Market

Passenger numbers in millions (000,000)
2018 RankCarrier2018 Enplaned Passengers2017 Rank2017 Enplaned PassengersPct. Change 2017-2018
1Southwest163.6061157.6773.8
2Delta152.0292145.6474.4
3American148.1813144.8642.3
4United113.1974107.2435.6
5JetBlue42.236540.0155.5
6SkyWest38.956635.7768.9
7Alaska33.503726.06728.5
8Spirit28.683823.81320.5
9Frontier19.4331016.80015.7
10Republic 18.640916.93210.1
Notes: 
* System equals domestic international
Percentage changes based on numbers prior to rounding.
Source: 

Nextstagesolutions, T-100 Market

Passenger numbers in millions (000,000)
2018 RankAirport2018 Enplaned Passengers2017 Rank2017 Enplaned PassengersPct. Change 2017-2018
1Atlanta51.844150.2433.2
2Los Angeles42.578241.2013.3
3Chicago O'Hare39.851338.5773.3
4Dallas/Fort Worth32.780431.7943.1
5Denver31.341529.7875.2
6New York JFK30.489629.4903.4
7San Francisco27.770726.8923.3
8Seattle23.977922.6046.1
9Las Vegas23.593823.1501.9
10Orlando23.1551121.5427.5
Notes: 
* System equals domestic international
Percentage changes based on numbers prior to rounding.
Source: 

Nextstagesolutions, T-100 Market

Annual
20172018Change %
Passengers (in millions)741.7777.94.9
Flights (in thousands)8,177.68,391.42.6
Revenue Passenger Miles (in billions)684.2721.25.4
Available Seat-Miles (in billions)809.1854.05.5
Load Factor*84.684.5-0.1
Flight Stage Length**710.0721.01.5
Passenger Trip Length***922.5927.10.5
Notes: 
* Change in load factor points
** The average non-stop distance flown per departure in miles
*** The average distance flown per passenger in miles
Percentage changes based on numbers prior to rounding.
Source: 

Nextstagesolutions, T-100 Domestic Market and Segment

Passenger numbers in millions (000,000)
201620172016-2017 Pct. Change20182017-2018 Pct. Change
January52.554.13.155.83.2
February51.151.1-0.154.15.9
March61.664.03.866.64.2
April58.961.13.764.65.7
May62.864.42.767.85.3
June64.866.73.170.35.3
July66.168.63.772.55.8
August63.566.75.070.35.5
September58.657.1-2.560.55.8
October61.764.64.767.13.8
November59.361.94.564.64.4
December59.261.43.763.63.7
Yr. Total720.0741.73.0777.94.9
Notes: 

Percentage changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Source: 

Nextstagesolutions, T-100 Domestic Market

Passenger numbers in millions (000,000)
2018 RankCarrier2018 Enplaned Passengers2017 Rank2017 Enplaned PassengersPct. Change 2017-2018
1Southwest159.0451153.8093.4
2Delta126.4732120.7354.8
3American119.4713116.4712.6
4United85.896480.4346.8
5SkyWest37.427534.0549.9
6JetBlue33.965632.3944.8
7Alaska31.493724.06330.9
8Spirit26.319821.97119.8
9Frontier18.669915.97016.9
10Republic 17.5941015.78711.4
Notes: 

Percentage changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Source: 

Nextstagesolutions, T-100 Domestic Market

Passenger numbers in millions (000,000)
2018 RankAirport2018 Enplaned Passengers2017 Rank2017 Enplaned PassengersPct. Change 2017-2018
1Atlanta45.711144.3513.1
2Chicago O'Hare33.144232.1893.0
3Los Angeles30.008329.1423.0
4Denver29.883428.5034.8
5Dallas/Fort Worth28.641527.7303.3
6Las Vegas21.812621.3822.0
7Seattle21.3811020.1326.2
8San Francisco20.995820.4372.7
9Charlotte20.715720.4931.1
10Phoenix20.580920.1442.2
Notes: 

Percentage changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Source: 

Nextstagesolutions, T-100 Domestic Market

Annual
20172018Change %
Passengers (in millions)223.7233.64.4
Flights (in thousands)1,583.81,621.02.3
Revenue Passenger Miles (in billions)752.6790.55.0
Available Seat-Miles (in billions)933.3968.03.7
Load Factor*80.681.71.0
Flight Stage Length**2,401.12,418.30.7
Passenger Trip Length***3,364.93,384.40.6
Notes: 
* Change in load factor points
** The average non-stop distance flown per departure in miles
*** The average distance flown per passenger in miles
Percentage changes based on numbers prior to rounding.
Source: 

Nextstagesolutions, T-100 International Market and Segment

Passenger numbers in millions (000,000)
201620172016-2017 Pct. Change20182017-2018 Pct. Change
January16.617.55.717.91.8
February14.514.81.615.76.3
March17.518.02.719.79.6
April16.718.812.319.11.8
May18.018.95.320.16.2
June19.520.76.322.06.2
July21.522.75.623.53.5
August20.822.16.322.62.5
September17.317.51.318.03.0
October17.017.73.918.33.5
November15.716.55.117.45.6
December18.118.52.419.34.1
Yr. Total213.1223.74.9233.64.4
Notes: 

Percentage changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Source: 

Nextstagesolutions, T-100 International Market

Passenger numbers in thousands (000)
2018 RankCarrier2018 Enplaned Passengers2017 Rank2017 Enplaned PassengersPct. Change 2017-2018
1American28,710.0128,392.11.1
2United27,301.0226,808.31.8
3Delta25,555.9324,911.92.6
4JetBlue8,270.747,621.08.5
5British Air6,803.457,072.6-3.8
6Lufthansa 6,114.465,940.52.9
7Air Canada5,239.184,908.86.7
8WestJet4,949.175,036.1-1.7
9Southwest4,560.793,868.217.9
10Virgin Atlantic3,776.8123,552.76.3
Notes: 

Percentage changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Source: 

Nextstagesolutions, T-100 International Market

Passenger numbers in thousands (000)
2018 RankAirport2018 Enplaned Passengers2017 Rank2017 Enplaned PassengersPct. Change 2017-2018
1New York JFK16,459.9116,058.62.5
2Los Angeles12,570.6212,059.24.2
3Miami10,147.5310,159.2-0.1
4Newark6,849.666,263.69.4
5San Francisco6,775.346,455.15.0
6Chicago O'Hare6,707.456,387.95.0
7Atlanta6,133.575,891.74.1
8Houston Bush5,236.585,048.83.7
9Fort Lauderdale4,158.7113,500.418.8
10Dallas/Fort Worth4,138.794,064.61.8
Notes: 

Percentage changes based on numbers prior to rounding.

Source: 

Nextstagesolutions, T-100 International Market

Updated: Thursday, March 21, 2019
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