United Airlines may just have the last laugh concerning the David Dao UA3411 incident. Its April numbers are in and they show no backlash over the dragging or leggings incident.
There is no doubt about it, United had a very good month. Furthermore, United did well against its competition, cancelling fewer flights and boasting a superior on-time arrival average.
United highlights the following from its April performance–
- Finished April ahead of all primary competitors in important metrics including on-time departures and arrivals, as well as the fewest flight cancellations for the month among the same group of peers.
- Achieved another record-setting month with fewer flight cancellations than any other month in the company’s history.
- Set a no-cancel streak record, going 145 hours without a flight cancellation.
Breaking down the numbers further, we see United transported 12 million passengers last month, 7.6% more than April 2016. Load factor was up by 2.6% to 83.1% (87% on domestic flights, 78.4% on international flights). Finally, revenue passenger miles grew 7.4% to 17.5 billion, the airline said. Revenue passenger miles is number of paying passengers multiplied by the distance traveled.
Even United’s cargo business is booming, with business (tons transported) up nearly 20%.
You can check out all the numbers here. These are operational numbers, not financials. It is conceivable United only achieved such great numbers by slashing prices, but United also expects second quarter profit to rise 1-3% over 2016. We will soon see.
We’ll wait for May just to be sure, but the public’s disgust over the Dao incident has not yet hurt United’s performance. It has not hurt the stock price either. Currently the stock is trading at $74.98. The day before the Dao incident the stock was $70.88.
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