Airline Profits to Soar to 6.9 Billion Dollars in 2011

Like many of the factors that have affected the Airline Industry in the past, the recent global economic slowdown has proved to have a very limited effect on demand for airline travel, according to the International Air Transport Association (IATA) said on Tuesday. It is expected that the continued high levels of passenger traffic will earn higher-than-expected profits for the industry.

The IATA recently revised its estimate of the Airline Industry profits from $4 billion to $6.9 billion. IATA’s membership includes major U.S. carriers such as American Airlines, Delta Airlines, United Continental Airlines, JetBlue Airways and U.S. Airways.

Passenger demand has been stronger this year, and IATA now expects 5.9% more passengers in 2011 compared with 2010, up from 4.4% growth projected in June. That translates to 2.8 billion passengers for the industry this year.

The industry body expects North American carriers to report a net profit of $1.5 billion

The revised forecast came after months of airfare hikes and fees that airlines are charging for items such as those for excess luggage. In spite of the higher costs, passenger numbers at U.S. airports have changed little since last year.