Airlines have been releasing April traffic data that indicate a bottoming-out in demand erosion, with improved load factors, or the percentage of available seats filled with passengers. As capacity matches demand, it could put a halt to falling ticket prices.
The news comes on the heels of better-than-expected results for April that showed sharp capacity cuts more than matched a drop in demand, giving airlines fuller planes and holding out hope the industry has reached the bottom for declining revenue.
“It does seem like the airlines have finally got the balance of demand and capacity,” said Terry Trippler of the airline consultancy Trippler Associates. “But you need three months to make a good trend. April certainly looked like we’re getting there, but May and June will tell us if we are there.”
Though May might not look as good, Trippler said he still expects Americans to take advantage of historically cheap airfare and keep up their travels. By June, as long as the situation doesn’t get worse, things could be back to normal.