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Easyjet carries an extra 1mln passengers in September but load factor slips

A fall in load factor will be a disappointment for some, given that, in an era of low ticket prices, airlines need to get as many bums on seats as possible

easyjet plane
Load factor is a measure of how full a plane is

Easyjet PLC (LON:EZJ) flew an extra 1mln passengers in September compared with a year earlier, although the budget airline reported a dip in load factor.

FTSE 250-listed Easyjet carried 8.82mln passengers in September, 14% more than the 7.72mln it carried in the same month in 2017.

READ: Ryanair and Wizz Air report double-digit passenger growth

Load factor, an important industry metric that measures how full a plane is, slipped 0.8 percentage points to 92.8%, down from 93.6% a year earlier.

Airlines have had to cut their prices in recent years in a bid to fill their planes with as many customers as possible as competition in the sector has ramped up.

On a rolling 12-month basis, the white and orange liveried carrier flew 88.45mln passengers at a load factor of 92.9%.

That compares with 80.25mln passengers and a load factor of 92.6% for the 12 months to the end of September 2017.

On Tuesday, Ryanair PLC (LON:RYA) and Wizz Air Holdings PLC (LON:WIZZ) both reported double-digit passenger growth for September.

Ryanair, which blamed strikes for issuing a profit warning a day earlier, saw its load factor hold steady at 97%, while Wizz’s edged up to 94.1%.

Quick facts: easyJet plc

Price: 975.8 GBX

LSE:EZJ
Market: LSE
Market Cap: £4.46 billion
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