Lufthansa reports 2.8 pct drop in traffic
Swiss Air also lost passengers and freight in the first half of 2009.Frankfurt -- The leading German airline, Lufthansa, said on Thursday it suffered a 2.8 percent fall in traffic in June from the figure for the same month in 2008, due to the global economic crisis.
Lufthansa transported a total of 4.92 million passengers while its subsidiary Swiss Air carried 1.12 million, a statement said.
The airline's seat load factor, a key indicator of operations, fell by 3.4 points to 77.6 percent despite reduced overall capacity.
For the first half of 2009, Lufthansa said its own passenger numbers fell by 6.1 percent to 26.7 million, but that when Swiss was included the drop was a more modest 4.8 percent to 33.2 million.
"Except for Middle East / Africa, the first half passenger count declined in all traffic regions," the statement said.
Freight operations were also hit by the global slowdown, with Lufthansa Cargo carrying 694,000 tonnes of freight and mail in the first six months of 2009, 20.1 percent less than in the same period of 2008.
Lufthansa said in June that it would take more measures to reduce costs, and raised fuel surcharges on most passenger flights as it raised its forecast for fuel expenses in 2009 to EUR 3.55 billion (CHF 5.38 billion, USD 5 billion) from EUR 3.4 billion previously.
AFP / Expatica