New York: Air travel on international sectors has shown an increase in the first three months of the year as global economy recovers from recession, according to international airlines trade body IATA.
On Monday, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) said premium travel was up 7.6% in the first three months of the year from the same quarter last year, even as economy-class travel showed an increase of 7.4%.
In particular, the number of premium passengers flying internationally in March rose 10.8%, as compared to a year ago, with economy numbers up 8.8%. Industry observers point out that the figures for March indicate a fourth consecutive month of growth, which is for the first time since May 2008.
What would particularly please airlines would be the fact that that corporate demand, particularly in the Far East sector, has firmed up and is the main driver for the growth.
''Of course, both travel classes have been rebounding from the low levels of 2009, so there has been the usual post-recession surge in pent-up travel demand," IATA said in a statement.
The data regarding premium class travel, which includes business and first-class travel, is crucial for the airlines industry as premium passengers generate 30% of international revenue though they account for just 10% of international fliers, according to IATA.