Passenger Traffic Continues to Increase for Airlines in the United States

More passengers are filling the seats of America’s airliners then they were last year in spite of inflated oil prices and a struggling economy.

American Eagle said Wednesday that June passenger traffic jumped 18.6 percent compared with a year ago, as the short-haul connecting service for American Airlines added flights.

Southwest Airlines Co. said Friday its combined traffic with newly acquired AirTran Airways traffic rose 7.5 percent in June.

US Airways Group Inc. said Wednesday that its traffic rose 2.5 percent in June on a similar increase in the airline’s number of available seats.

Alaska Airlines saw a 7.9 percent increase in traffic, or revenue passenger miles, as well as a 6.8 percent increase in capacity, or available seat miles, compared to June 2010.

American Airlines reported single-digit increases in passenger traffic in June and for the first six months of the year, while American Eagle Airlines, its regional airline affiliate, reported double-digit increases in traffic in June and for the first half of 2011, airline executives said Wednesday.

Although June traffic dipped slightly for the second largest U.S. airline, Delta Air Lines Inc. expects second quarter 2011 to be profitable owing to higher revenues, which would largely offset the fuel price inflation.