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China Airlines and EVA Air’s yields remain depressed, but signs of improvement


Taiwan’s leading airlines, China Airlines and EVA Air, continued to experience yield weakness in Oct-2009, although the signs suggest that yields are on the improve, after bottoming out in Jul-2009/Aug-2009. The reductions in Oct-2009 are also coming off a base of growth in Oct-2008.

EVA Air and China Airlines pax and cargo yield highlights: Oct-2009

However, passenger numbers for both carriers were up in Oct-2009, by 9.7% for China Airlines and 5.6% for EVA Air. Load factors were up 2.5 ppts at China Airlines, to 75.8%, but remained stronger at EVA Air, at 78.8%, despite a 1.6 ppt year-on-year reduction.

EVA Air and China Airlines traffic highlights for Oct-2009



Y-o-Y change

China Airlines

Y-o-Y change

Passenger numbers





Passenger load factor


-1.6 ppts


+2.5 ppts

Passenger yield^





Cargo yield^





Seven months of passenger yield contractions

The carriers’ continue to report double-digit reductions in passenger yields in Oct-2009 (for seven consecutive months of double digit contractions for both carriers), with reductions of 17.5% and 15.2%, respectively.

EVA Air and China Airlines pax yield growth (%): Jan-2007 to Oct-2009

And 11 months of freight yield reductions 

The ongoing global economic crisis has had an even harsher effect on cargo, reflected in the painfully low cargo yields of EVA Air and China Airlines, which are among Asia’s largest airfreight operators. Both carriers have experienced 11 consecutive months  of double-digit freight yield contractions, with the severity of the contractions being very similar between the two carriers. 

EVA Air and China Airlines freight yield growth (%): Jan-2007 to Oct-2009

In Oct-2009, EVA Air’s cargo yields slumped 21.8%, with China Airlines’ cargo yield’s down 15%, although this represents a marked uptick from previous levels.

EVA and CAL face the prospect of a slow recovery in yields.  For the cargo segment, the coming weeks will be crucial, with airlines banking on signs of the usual pre-Christmas cargo rush.

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