Profits Are Up In The Global Airline Industry With Carriers Making An Average Of $8.27 Per Passenger

As airlines make room on planes so they can pack in more passengers, North America’s carriers are showing that such efforts are paying off, literally, with a new report that gives North America the lead in profits compared to the rest of industry worldwide.

While the industry as a whole is raking it in more due to more seats getting filled on planes and decreasing fuel prices, the International Air Transport Association says North America is in the lead, reports the AFP.

Collectively, airlines are projected to make about $29.3 billion in collective profit of revenues of around $727 billion in 2015.

“For the first time in IATA’s records, the industry as a whole is earning its cost of capital,” said Tony Tyler, director general of the organization.

The main driving force behind this increase profitability, Tyler says, is efficiency.

“This year we expect airlines to fill 80.2% of their seats, a record high,” he told reporters.

It doesn’t come easy, he noted, as a “hard-earned 4% net profit margin” brings in about $8.27 in profit per passenger on average.

Industry performance isn’t uniform across the board, however, with North America and Middle East airlines performing the best and European, Asian-Pacific, African and Latin American carriers performing below average for the industry, Tyler said.

About half of the industry’s profits — around $15.7 billion come from North American airlines, as the industry continues to pack more people into larger planes. Heck, Boeing is working on new 777 jets that can fit about 14 more seats per plane just by shrinking the bathrooms, Bloomberg reported recently. Gotta get those profits, even if you can barely turn around in the lavatory.

Airlines profit as planes fill up with passengers [AFP]

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