LATAM Airlines passenger traffic up 2.8 percent in May

SANTIAGO, June 10 Tue Jun 10, 2014 5:35pm EDT

SANTIAGO, June 10 (Reuters) - LATAM Airlines Group SA , Latin America's largest carrier, said on Tuesday that total passenger traffic increased 2.8 percent in May year-on-year, while its overall load factor rose 3.1 percentage points to 82.9 percent.

The company, formed in 2012 from the tie-up of Chilean flagship LAN and Brazilian airline TAM, has been cutting capacity in Brazil to boost efficiency and shore up margins. The moves have allowed its planes to fly closer to full capacity.

Load factor, a measure of how full planes are, rose 1.4 points to 80.2 percent in Brazil and increased 2.0 points to 77.3 percent at the airline's other operations in Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru.

Brazilian domestic passenger traffic increased 0.6 percent, while domestic passenger traffic in the Spanish-speaking nations rose 5.5 percent, the carrier said in a statement.

International passenger traffic rose 3.4 percent in May, while cargo traffic slipped 0.7 percent. (Reporting by Anthony Esposito; Editing by Leslie Adler)

FILED UNDER: