The number of miles passengers flew worldwide increased 6.3 percent last year over 2015, new numbers from the International Air Transport Association (IATA) reveal.
This performance was well ahead of the ten-year average annual growth rate of 5.5 percent, IATA said in a news release. In addition, capacity rose 6.2 percent (unadjusted) compared to 2015.
“Air travel was a good news story in 2016,” Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s director general and CEO, said in a news release. “Connectivity increased with the establishment of more than 700 new routes. And a $44 fall in average return fares helped to make air travel even more accessible. As a result, a record 3.7 billion passengers flew safely to their destination.
“Demand for air travel is still expanding,” de Juniac added. “The challenge for governments is to work with the industry to meet that demand with infrastructure that can accommodate the growth, regulation that facilitates growth and taxes that don’t choke growth. If we can achieve that, there is plenty of potential for a safe, secure and sustainable aviation industry to create more jobs and increase prosperity.”