African airlines passenger traffic up 69.5%, 1.0% increase in air cargo – IATA

  • Global air traffic reaches 73.7% of pre-crisis levels



IATA reported a 67.7% upsurge in August 2022 air traffic, compared to the same month in 2021, mirroring a continued strong rebound in the air travel sector, with global traffic at 73.7% of pre-crisis levels.

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) reported on Thursday a 67.7% upsurge in air traffic in August 2022 — measured in revenue passenger kilometres (RPKs) — compared to the same month in 2021, mirroring a continued strong rebound in the air travel sector, with global traffic at 73.7% of pre-crisis levels.

In the passenger market in August 2022 vs August 2021, African airlines’ experienced a 69.5% rise in traffic (measured by Revenue Passenger Kilometres – RPKs – flown, and increased capacity by 45.3%.


August 2022
(% year-on-year)
World share1 CTK ACTK CLF (%-pt)2 CLF (level)3
Total Market 100.0% -8.3% 6.3% -7.5% 46.7%
Africa 1.9% 1.0% -1.4% 1.0% 41.8%
Asia Pacific 32.6% -8.3% 13.9% -13.2% 54.7%
Europe 22.8% -15.1% 0.4% -9.2% 50.2%
Latin America 2.2% 9.0% 24.3% -5.2% 37.4%
Middle East 13.4% -11.3% -0.1% -5.9% 46.6%
North America 27.2% -3.4% 5.7% -3.7% 39.3%
1 % of industry CTKs in 2021  2 Change in load factor   3 Load factor level
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The continent also saw its load factors climb by 10.8 percentage points to 75.9%. This is compared with a 67.7% rise in global traffic, which now stands at 73.7% of pre-pandemic levels.

Africa has a 1.9% share of the world airline passenger market. In the air cargo sector, during the same comparable period, African airlines recorded a 1.0% increase in cargo volumes (an improvement on July 2022 when volumes contracted by -3.5%), and reduced capacity by 1.4%.

This compares with a global -8.3% fall in demand for air cargo transport (a slight improvement on the -9.7% decline in July). Africa represents 1.9% of the world air cargo market.

“The Northern Hemisphere peak summer travel season finished on a high note. Considering the prevailing economic uncertainties, travel demand is progressing well,” IATA’s Director-General, Willie Walsh said, adding that “the removal or easing of travel restrictions at some key Asian destinations, including Japan, will certainly accelerate the recovery in Asia.”

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Walsh further noted that “Mainland China is the last major market retaining severe COVID-19 entry restrictions.”

International markets


Airlines in the Asia-Pacific market saw a 449.2% upswing in August traffic compared to August 2021. Capacity rose by 167.0% and the load factor was up 40.1% to 78.0%.

While the region experienced the strongest year-over-year growth, the remaining travel restrictions in China continue to hamper its overall recovery.


European carriers’ August traffic was up 78.8% from August 2021. Capacity rose 48.0%, and the load factor increased by 14.7% to 85.5%, marking the second-highest load factor after North America.

The Middle East

Airlines in the Middle East registered a 144.9% increase in traffic compared to August 2021, with a 72.2% increase in capacity and a 23.7% growth in the load factor to 79.8%

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North America

The market recorded the highest load factor at 87.2%, a 16.9% increase above August 2021 levels. Capacity rose by 69.7% and air traffic saw a 110.4% upsurge.

Latin America

Latin American airlines’ August traffic rose by 102.5% compared to the same month in 2021. Capacity rose by 80.8% and the load factor climbed by 8.9% to 83.5%.

African airlines


African airlines saw a 69.5% rise in August RPKs compared to last year, with a 45.3% increase in capacity and a 10.8% growth in the load factor to 75.9%, the lowest among all regions. However, international traffic between Africa and neighbouring regions remained near pre-pandemic levels.

Wole Shadare