Press releases

Passenger increase for Brussels Airlines in 2012

Thursday, January 10, 2013 Brussels Airlines welcomed exactly 5,748,251 passengers in 2012, an increase of 1 percent compared to 2011. The passenger figures were mainly influenced by the growth of the long haul traffic and the capacity changes on the European network. This strategy has led to a passenger growth, an increase of the load factor by 2.2 percent and a significant growth of the freight acitivity.

2012 was a transition year for Brussels Airlines. The airline invested heavily in the long haul offer with the launch of a daily scheduled service to New York JFK, extra frequencies to Africa and the introduction of a new on-board product. The short- and midhaul offer has been adapted to the market evolution influenced by the financial crisis in Europe. Since autumn last year the offer has also been adapted to the seasonality, especially for touristic destinations that are known to be less popular in winter. On top, the European fleet was harmonized during the course of 2012.

The number of passengers that flew Brussels Airlines in 2012 increased by 1 percent, or 59,353, compared to 2011, for a total of 5,748,251. The African network registered a passenger increase of 10.1 percent. The intra-European traffic decreased by 2%, in line with the capacity adjustments.

The load factor increased by 2.2 percent to 68.7 percent. The service to New York that launched in June registered an average seat load factor of 80 percent.
2012 was a very successful year for Brussels Airlines in terms of cargo activities, with a freight ton- kilometres increase of 24,8 percent. 

The passenger figures only reflect the scheduled flights of Brussels Airlines. The passengers of charter flights operated by Brussels Airlines on behalf of tour operators are not included.

Year 2012

Year 2011

year/ year
difference in pct.

Passengers 5,748,251 5,688,898 +1.0
Available seat-kilometres (2 dec. pts.) 13405,79 12755,05 + 5.1
Revenue seat-kilometres (2 dec. pts.) 9215,25


+ 8.6
Freight ton-kilometres (no decs. pts.) 149820 120031 + 24.8
Overall Load Factor (Passengers & cargo) 60.3 % 54.2 % + 6.1 pct. points
Passenger Load Factor PLF 68.7 % 66.5 % + 2.2 pct. points

December 2012

December 2011

month/ month
difference in pct.

Passengers 386,477 389,503 - 0.8
Available seat-kilometres (2 dec. pts.) 1030.54 936.54 + 10.0
Revenue seat-kilometres (2 dec. pts.) 688.63


+ 11.9
Freight ton-kilometres (no decs. pts.) 11001 9179 + 19.9
Overall Load Factor (Passengers & cargo) 57.2 % 53.3 % +3.9 pct. points
Passenger Load Factor PLF 66.8 % 65.7 % + 1.1 pct. points