BA, market remain soft

6 August 2002

LONDON - The no-frills operators continue to snap at the heels of British Airways.

While the number of passengers travelling with British Airways has fallen again, low-cost operator Ryanair said yesterday that it had carried 1.46 million passengers in July, up from 1.03 million the year before.

BA's July traffic, measured in the number of kilometres flown per paying customer, fell by 12.9 percent compared with a year before.

BA, which recently announced substantial fare discounts on its European routes in an attempt to win back business from the budget airlines, said that passenger capacity was more than 12 percent lower than the same point last year, reflecting the reduction in BA services, introduced in an attempt to cut costs.

Last week, BA said the savings were paying off as it reported better-than-expected profits of UK£65 million (US$100.8 million) for the April to June period, but the airline says the market remains 'soft'.

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