Have you ever wondered what happened to the days of boarding an airplane and finding a choice of empty seats to sprawl out and relax in? A combination of reduced services, mergers and alliances – plus increased technical capabilities for forecasting optimal flight schedules, has created high occupancy on the majority of domestic US flights.
US airlines are now operating the most crowded aircraft since 1945, according to recently released data by the US Department of Transportation (DOT) and Airlines for America, the US Airline Industry representative body.
The data released by DOT shows that US airlines carried 736.6 million passengers – on both domestic and international flights- in 2012, 0.8 percent more than 2011.
A statement by Airlines for America shows that US airlines achieved a load factor of 82.8 in 2012 – the highest since 1945.
US airlines carried a record 83.4 million international passengers in 2012, according to the DOT report.