AirTran Reports Profits and Traffic Rising, Looks to Milwaukee for growth

AirTran Airways said on Monday that its April traffic rose compared to the same period a year ago. The airline’s load factor, or the average percentage of seats filled on a flight, also rose 6.5 percentage points to 80.4 percent.


Airtran

Airtran also reported its best ever first quarter profit Wednesday following announcements in March that it would be profitable in every quarter of 2009.

“Our ability to report a profit today is rooted in the difficult decisions we made last year. AirTran Airways was among the first airlines to react to the changing economic environment and we are among the first to show signs of recovery,” Bob Fornaro, AirTran Airways’ chairman, president and chief executive officer, said in a statement.

AirTran said the combination of lower fuel costs and adjustments to its fleet helped the carrier post its first quarterly profit since 2007.

AirTran has reduced seating capacity by 7.2 percent, though it has expanded service in some cities, including Milwaukee, where it plans to expand by more than 50 percent by the summer.

AirTran Airways’ ability to be nimble and responsive to changing market conditions is a tremendous competitive advantage. Increasing flights to and from Milwaukee and Orlando while redesigning our Atlanta hub schedule to make the network more efficient and productive are the latest examples of this capability,” Kevin Healy, senior vice president of marketing and planning, said in a statement.