Caribbean Air Lift Capacity

Air Lift Capacity & Load Factor Benchmarks in the Caribbean

Air Lift Capacity & Load Factor Benchmarks in the Caribbean
How does your Island Rate?

If you can’t measure it you can’t manage it…Air Lift Capacity and Air Lift Load Factors are important tourism metrics to driving successful tourism results.

Many Caribbean nations are challenged with air lift capacity to their islands and have been for many years. Air Lift capacity never seems to meet the islands need for air seats and visitor access. While many islands have seen recent improvements, a need for more air lift capacity still exists on many Islands. There is a value in knowing your relative performance on key air and tourism metrics as it regards strategic planning and actions you take to maximize your air lift and tourism economies.

Caribbean Air Lift Capacity Metrics

Data above pulled from various sources including One Caribbean and Aviation DataMiner.

We recommend you check your Island’s air lift capacity and flight occupancy against the above chart to gauge your relative performance in the Caribbean. For example if you produced over 80% flight occupancy in 2014 you are performing better than average, under 79% flight occupancy and you are performing under the standard level and may want to elevate your efforts to support your current air lift.

Why Flight Occupancy is an Important Air Lift Metric
When looking at the flight performance of 44 Caribbean airport flights there is a trend where Islands that are producing 80% or above load factors have more instances of sustaining or growing air service capacity in later years. Islands producing below 70% load factor are more likely to see air capacity decreases. While these are not absolute trends there is a lot of evidence of supporting high load factors driving more air capacity and lower load factors showing capacity decreases.

Air Lift Access – A Key Metric for Tourism Growth
I don’t have to tell Caribbean tourism professionals about the importance of air access to tourism industry growth. Islands that are seeing air service growth are typically also seeing a growth in their tourism guest receipts and economy.

Are you Prioritizing Maximizing your Air Lift Load Factors?
If you are not putting a priority in maximizing your air lift load factors you should be. This is the path to air lift increases and better tourism development and tourism revenues.

Maximizing air lift load factors is not just about producing an effective marketing strategy. Maximizing air lift load factors also involves truly understanding the airline industry and tourism sales funnel/guest purchasing behaviors and presenting air lift opportunities in a way that helps potential guests commit to a trip.

About 50% of Travelers Haven’t Committed to a Specific Destination when they begin their Travel Search!
Many travelers are shopping between a few travel options. Cost and value are often key factors in their decision-making process. You can help travelers choose your destination by presenting the value and cost of a trip including the air ticket cost when there is a material improvement in this cost. This air ticket cost is not always firm, often varying in price through the period many potential guests are searching. Often noticing travel prospects on travel and air deals to your destination can trigger a guest commitment and sales conversion driving incremental travel to your destination.

Air Lift Value is often a key Travel Decision Driver – To Many Trips begin with the Flight
Going beyond lowest price in your air access communications is also important. A good many people want more flight comfort and convenience and will pay a reasonable premium for this experience. It’s also important to note any changes in first class or other premium cabin air ticket costs as well as highlighting the value benefits to out compete other potential trip destinations for these more premium travelers business.

Specific Air Lift Professional Guidance Can Help Maximize Airline Service Performance
To be most effective with your prioritizing of air lift performance, we recommend a focused effort guided by air lift professionals with a track record of improving flight load factors. Every 1% load factor increase can mean many more spending tourists on your island and many more tourist dollars flowing through your local economies. Every 1% load factor growth can also help efforts to increase your air lift capacity. These benefits are worth investing in professional guidance that can help drive these economic revenue enhancing results.

Caribbean Tourism Performance Ranking

Revenue Enhancement is Critical to Air Lift Growth
While load factor is often a key driver to air lift capacity growth, higher load factor is really important because more passengers tends to mean more revenue and airline profitability. Because tourism profitability is also dependent on revenue enhancement we’ve also posted some key metrics above to help you measure within your competitive set your performance on other key Caribbean Tourism metrics.

Community Flights is an air service support, development and management company. We specialize on assisting leisure destination communities improve their generation of tourism activity through their air service and in air service driven revenue enhancement in these communities. Our track record includes helping multiple tourism driven community’s greatly increase their load factor (Over 10%) above previous levels and then increasing their air lift capacity.

For more information on Community Flights services contact Scott Stewart at 970-759-3559
or email him at

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