Domestic aviation activity


graph of annual domestic passengers

graph of monthly domestic passengers

There were 5.28 million passengers carried on Australian domestic commercial aviation (including charter operations) in March 2019, a decrease of 2.8 per cent on March 2018.

5.06 million passengers were carried on RPT flights in March 2019, a decrease of 3.1 per cent on March 2018.

RPT revenue passenger kilometres (RPKs) performed were 5.73 billion for the month, down 3.6 per cent compared with March 2018.

Capacity, measured by available seat kilometres (ASKs), decreased by 1.5 per cent compared with March 2018 to a total of 7.27 billion.

With RPT passenger traffic decreasing at a faster rate than capacity the industry wide load factor (RPKs/ASKs) decreased from 80.4 per cent in March 2018 to 78.7 per cent in March 2019.

For the month of March 2019, Melbourne – Sydney remained Australia’s busiest RPT route with 816 417 passengers, a decrease of 1.8 per cent compared with March 2018.

In March 2019, Sydney remained Australia’s busiest domestic airport with 2.33 million passenger movements, followed by Melbourne with 2.19 million passenger movements and Brisbane with 1.43 million passenger movements.

Total cargo movements at Australian airports on domestic RPT flights were 38.2 thousand tonnes in March 2019, a decrease of 6.5 per cent compared with March 2018.

In March 2019, there were 2.00 million domestic passenger movements through regional airports, 4.8 per cent lower than in March 2018.

Fixed-wing charter operators carried 210.8 thousand passengers in March 2019, an increase of 3.0 per cent on March 2018. Perth Airport accounted for 38.4 per cent of all charter passengers in Australia.


Summary of annual RPT activity
 YE Mar 2018YE Mar 2019Growth
Total passengers carried 60.47 million 60.88 million   0.7 %
Revenue passenger kilometres 70.53 billion 70.94 billion   0.6 %
Available seats 77.35 million 77.20 million  -0.2 %
Available seat kilometres 88.31 billion 88.31 billion   0.0 %
Load factor 79.9 % 80.3 %   0.5*
Aircraft trips 636.9 (000s) 629.4 (000s) -1.2 %

*percentage point difference