Airlines for America (A4A) projects U.S. airlines to carry an all-time high 257 million passengers from June 1-August 31, 2023.

Despite having to trim schedules, U.S. airlines will be able to accommodate demand by using larger aircraft. Year over year, U.S. airlines are adding 297,000 seats per day to accommodate 243,000 more passengers per day.

Airlines for America

“U.S. airlines have been hiring aggressively for positions across the industry. We now have the most workers we’ve had in 20 years. Airlines also are reducing their flight schedules to accommodate current realities, including the FAA’s air traffic controller staffing shortages,” said Nicholas E. Calio, A4A President and CEO.

“It has been said time and time again that the U.S. is the gold standard for aviation safety. We take pride in that, and we work hard at that every single day. It takes collaboration throughout the National Airspace System to maintain that safety record. Simply put, safety is—and always will be—our top priority.”

Preparing for the peak season

“Airlines are doing everything they can to prepare for this peak season,” said A4A Vice President and Chief Economist John Heimlich. “Roughly 487,000 full-time equivalent workers at U.S passenger airlines. That number is definitely above the pre-pandemic level. It is also the highest number since October 2001.”

“We want this summer to be a summer in which we are achieving our best operational reliability. It’s in our interest to make sure that our customers are treated right and have a good experience because we compete for their repeat business. I think we’ve gone above and beyond to make sure we are ready for the summer demand,” said Pinkerton. “I don’t necessarily think pulling down flights is a sustainable approach for the long term.”
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