Ashamed of flying? SAS is fine, thank you

What have we heard about the “flygskam” or shame of flying, a movement that would have had a definite impact on the Swedish air transport in just a few weeks, supposedly suddenly abandoned.

An impact that some had tried to explain by the context of the local market which simply does not have any more growth relays: tourism, if it is not negligible, works at full capacity only a few months per year (and we are far from the figures of destinations like France or Spain), as for domestic transport, it has reached its peak : given the geography of the region, the airplane is still the easiest way to travel, especially for business trips. This has been known for a long time, but it also means that the potential of the local market has been exploited for a long time and that its capacity for growth is almost zero. Hence the risk of a slight drop every time a cloud passes over the local or European economy.

It is in this context that SAS Scandinavian Airlines has just published its July figures.

With 2.8 million passengers carried, SAS has just set a record for the month of July.

Then one can say that it is logical, in July there are the tourists. An argument that falls flat.

First of all, if we compare the months of July to each other, they are all tourist months so we are comparing comparable things.

Second, domestic and medium-haul flights are driving SAS traffic growth. There has been a reduction in long-haul capacity and an increase in domestic and intra-European medium-haul capacity, a strategy that has boosted traffic. Tourist flights but also flights for locals. It is therefore the flights that should be substituted with a land or sea alternative that are driving the airline’s good results.

So before making headlines to sell papers and make clicks one should sometimes look at the figures.

Photo : B737 SAS by Soos Jozsef via Shutterstock

Bertrand Duperrin
Bertrand Duperrinhttp://www.duperrin.com
Compulsive traveler, present in the French #avgeek community since the late 2000s and passionate about (long) travel since his youth, Bertrand Duperrin co-founded Travel Guys with Olivier Delestre in March 2015.
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