|Air Canada set load record in October
By Brent Jang
Friday, November 5, 2004 - Page B9
Air Canada's load factor, the proportion of available seats filled,
rose last month while rival WestJet Airlines Ltd.'s declined.
Air Canada, which emerged Sept. 30 from bankruptcy protection, said its load factor climbed to 77.7 per cent in October. That's up from 73.2 per cent in the same month last year. The latest monthly figure was a record-high load factor in October for Air Canada and it also marked the seventh consecutive month of new monthly highs.
By contrast, WestJet's load factor dropped to 68.7 per cent last month from 72.8 per cent in the same month last year. WestJet's capacity grew faster than its ability to attract new passengers. The discount carrier's capacity, as measured by available seat miles, rose 31.5 per cent to 832 million last month while its revenue passenger miles -- the number of paid seats multiplied by the distance flown -- grew 24 per cent to 571.5 million.
WestJet's load factor in the first 10 months of this year dipped to 70.7 per cent from 71 per cent in the same period last year, while Air Canada's increased to 77.9 per cent from 74.4 per cent.
Air Canada ACE.B (TSX) declined 33 cents to $23.41.
WJA (TSX) fell 20 cents to $11.00