Where have all the passengers gone?

The onslaught of capacity reductions taking place this fall does not bode well for airports dependent on revenues from passenger facility charges.

Airports large and small are being impact as airlines cut capacity and passenger levels drop, says the American Association of Airport Executives (AAAE). The trade group's Energy/Air Service Task Force final report is available today.

A quick breakdown:

  • Total system arrivals and departures are expected to drop 7.3% between October 2007 and October 2008, according to the Official Airline Guide (OAG).
  • Carriers have eliminated service on more than 400 routes since March 2008, the The US House transportation and infrastructure subcommittee on aviation reports.
  • Airlines have already abandoned 60 communities and roughly 40 more will lose service this year, says The Air Transport Association of America (ATA) The airline trade group also says it is “not unrealistic” to expect as many as 200 communities could lose air service by early 2009.

AAAE will make policy recommendations. I'll blog about that after the press conference.

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