Southwest Airlines Reports November Traffic
Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) announced today that the Company flew 3.8 billion revenue passenger miles (RPMs) in November 2003, compared to 3.4 billion RPMs flown in November 2002. Available seat miles (ASMs) increased 3.9 percent to 5.9 billion from the November 2002 level of 5.7 billion. The load factor for the month was 63.7 percent, compared to 60.5 percent for November 2002.
James F. Parker, Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, stated: "Traffic grew a healthy 9.4 percent in November 2003, reflecting, in part, the benefit of the full Thanksgiving weekend falling into November, as compared to last year, when the month ended the Saturday after Thanksgiving. Conversely, while bookings for December 2003 are fine at this point, year-over-year comparisons for December will be more difficult, and December's load factors could fall below last year's level of 66.0 percent.
"We also continue to be negatively affected by high energy costs. Even though we are well-hedged for fourth quarter 2003, we expect our average jet fuel costs to approximate 75 cents per gallon. At this point, we expect overall unit costs for fourth quarter 2003 to increase in the four percent range as compared to last year's fourth quarter, which is in line with previous expectations."
For the eleven months ended November 30, 2003, Southwest flew 44.0 billion RPMs, compared to 41.5 billion RPMs for the same period in 2002. Available seat miles increased 4.2 percent to 65.6 billion from the 2002 level of 63.0 billion. The year-to-date load factor was 67.0 percent, compared to 65.9 percent for the same period last year.
This press release contains forward-looking statements as defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. All forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from the plans, intentions, and expectations reflected in or suggested by the forward-looking statements. Additional information concerning the factors, which could cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements, are contained in the Company's periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including without limitation, the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended 2002. The Company undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward- looking statements to reflect events or circumstances that may arise after the date of this press release.
This release, as well as past news releases on Southwest, are available online at www.southwest.com .
SOUTHWEST AIRLINES CO.
PRELIMINARY COMPARATIVE TRAFFIC STATISTICS
|Revenue passengers carried||5,351,520||4,946,363||8.2 %|
|Revenue passenger miles (000)||3,761,670||3,438,521||9.4 %|
|Available seat miles (000)||5,903,522||5,680,119||3.9 %|
|Load factor||63.7%||60.5%||3.2 pts.|
|Average length of haul||703||695||1.2 %|
|Revenue passengers carried||60,319,419||57,754,313||4.4 %|
|Revenue passenger miles (000)||44,008,161||41,501,314||6.0 %|
|Available seat miles (000)||65,637,531||62,987,910||4.2 %|
|Load factor||67.0%||65.9%||1.1 pts.|
|Average length of haul||730||719||1.5|
|Trips flown||870,069||867,849||0.3 %|
SOURCE Southwest Airlines Co.