Network-wide capacity cuts boost load
Finnair has blamed a sharp decline in business travel for a 5.7% drop in overall passenger traffic in April, with the European market among the worst hit.
The struggling airline said it had cut capacity on European routes by 11.8% in response to falling demand, resulting in a 4.3% boost in load.
Christer Haglund, Finnair's senior vp communications, said: "Through capacity cuts we have maintained load factors at a reasonable level.
"The problem, however, is an acceleration of the fall in average prices, resulting from a sharp reduction in business travel."
Finnair said capacity had been cut across most of its network in an attempt to increase passenger load.
Domestic capacity was down by almost 20% after passenger figures dropped 16.7% to 132,500.
Load on scheduled traffic increased 2.8% after the airline cut its capacity by 9.4% in response to a 10.7% drop in passenger numbers to 529,951.
Finnair is the second airline to blame poor April traffic on falling demand for business travel. British Airways today (May 7) released figures showing an 18% drop in premium traffic.
Last month Finnair predicted a full-year loss after its first quarter results revealed a 10% decline in turnover to €515.7m.
The airline also announced cost cutting measures amounting to €100m would continue, with half of savings made through staff cuts.
Around 600 staff have been made redundant so far, with 6,000 lay-offs expected.
700 Pilots will laid-off for at least one week this year as a result of changes to flight scheduling and capacity.