Boyd Group International Predicting Zero Passenger Growth, Shrinking Fleets, Fewer Flights in 2013

Boyd Group International Predicting Zero Passenger Growth, Shrinking Fleets,
Fewer Flights in 2013

EVERGREEN, Colo., Jan. 8, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- A snapshot forecast of
trends in the US airline industry indicates declines in flights, seat capacity
and passengers in the coming year.

According to analyses accomplished by Boyd Group International, the nation's
air transportation system will likely see a 1.5% to 2.0% drop in traffic in
2013. Into subsequent years, growth rates will also be much slower than
previously expected, with US airports handling nearly 50 million fewer
passengers in 2017 than the FAA is currently forecasting.

"Airline traffic can no longer be forecast simply with mathematical formulas
based on metrics such as GDP, inflation, buying power and the like," stated
Michael Boyd, Chairman. "There are only ten major full-schedule airline
systems left, and each has its own subjective strategy in regard to where and
if it adds capacity."

The report notes that airlines will be flying fewer airplanes in the next
three years, as 50-seat "regional" jets get retired. But this will actually be
positive for many small airports, particularly in markets where these jets are
operating in excess of 80% full. "In a number of cases, the replacement with
larger airliners will be revenue-positive for both airlines and the
communities they serve," stated Boyd, whose firm in 1999 was the first to
forecast the decline in demand for 50-seat jets. The firm forecasts that by
2017, US carriers will retire nearly 1,000 of these smaller airliners.

The report predicts further robust demand for new-generation mainline-cabin
airliners – the Boeing 737MAX, the Airbus A-320NEO and the Bombardier
C-Series. "The economics of these airplanes will allow a wider
mission-envelope, including even some replacement of regional jet flying,"
Boyd noted.

The report also briefly discusses forecast trends at key airlines that will
set the pace for the rest of the industry, including the potential American –
US Airways merger, Delta's cutting-edge fleet strategies, Spirit's unique
strategy of head-on competition with majors, and outcomes of the combination
of Southwest and AirTran.

The snapshot report can be viewed and downloaded at

Founded in 1984, Boyd Group International is a multi-dimensional aviation
consulting and research firm, providing assistance to airlines, airports,
financial institutions, and manufacturers.

The Boyd Group, Inc. logo is available at

CONTACT: Michael J. Boyd, Boyd Group International, Inc.
         78 Beaver Brook Canyon Road, Evergreen, Colorado  80439

The Boyd Group, Inc. Logo
Press spacebar to pause and continue. Press esc to stop.