Southwest Airlines July traffic rises 5.2 percent – JetBlue traffic up for the first time in almost a year

JetBlue Airways Corp. said Thursday its traffic increased in July — the first month-over-month improvement for the low-cost carrier in nearly a year.


Southwest Airlines also reported an increase in traffic last month — a sign that discount carriers are getting more passengers in the critical summer season.

JetBlue said paying passengers flew a total of 2.54 billion miles in July, compared with 2.537 billion a year earlier. It was the first time JetBlue had posted improving traffic since August 2008.

Southwest Airlines said Thursday its traffic rose 5.2 percent in July as it cut capacity to fill more seats.

Southwest said it flew paying passengers 7.24 billion miles last month, compared with 6.89 billion miles in July 2008.

It trimmed capacity by 3.6 percent. Carriers can cut capacity by removing jets from service or by downsizing to smaller planes on less-trafficked routes.