News Releases

WestJet reports record December load factor of 81.9 per cent

Airline achieves record fourth quarter and full-year load factors

CALGARY, Jan. 7, 2013 /CNW/ - WestJet today announced December 2012 traffic results with a record load factor of 81.9 per cent. Revenue passenger miles (RPMs), or traffic, increased 7.2 per cent year over year, and capacity, measured in available seat miles (ASMs), grew 6.0 per cent over the same period. The airline flew 17.4 million guests in all of 2012 which is a year-over-year increase of 8.6 per cent or approximately 1,383,000 additional guests.

"We are very pleased to close out the year with six consecutive monthly load factor records and   record high loads in all four quarters. Our positive momentum culminated in 2012 with a new single-day record of flying more than 57,000 guests on December 21st," said WestJet President and CEO Gregg Saretsky. "Our forward bookings continue to be strong and I want to thank our more than 9,000 WestJetters for their great efforts and caring attitudes, despite challenging weather, that ensured another memorable holiday travel season for our guests."

December 2012 traffic results

  December 2012 December 2011 Change
Load factor 81.9% 80.9% 1.0 pts.  
ASMs (billions) 2.006 1.893 6.0%
RPMs (billions) 1.642 1.532 7.2%

  Fourth quarter
Fourth quarter
Load factor 81.9% 78.7% 3.2 pts.
ASMs (billions) 5.487 5.329 3.0%
RPMs (billions) 4.493 4.194 7.1%

  Full-year 2012 Full-year 2011 Change
Load factor 82.8% 79.7% 3.1 pts.
ASMs (billions) 22.064 21.186 4.1%
RPMs (billions) 18.263 16.891 8.1%

WestJet reached a major milestone in early December, when it took delivery of its 100th Boeing Next-Generation 737 aircraft. In 2013, WestJet will take delivery of an additional five Boeing Next-Generation 737 aircraft and seven Bombardier Q400 NextGen aircraft. "With the delivery of its first two Q400s scheduled for June and the launch of its first schedule in February, excitement is building as WestJet Encore gets closer to providing more communities with access to our low fares and caring guest experience," added Gregg Saretsky.

Caution regarding forward-looking statements
Certain information set forth in this news release, including information regarding the demand environment, future aircraft deliveries and the launch of and plans for the regional airline contains forward-looking statements. By their nature, forward-looking statements are subject to numerous risks and uncertainties, some of which are beyond WestJet's control. These forward-looking statements are based on WestJet's existing strategy and currently available implementation plans, agreements and bookings, but may vary due to factors including, but not limited to, changes in guest demand, regulatory and competitive environment and general economic conditions. These and additional risk factors are discussed in WestJet's most recent Annual Information Form and in other documents WestJet files from time to time with securities regulatory authorities, which are available under WestJet's profile on SEDAR at

Readers are cautioned that undue reliance should not be placed on forward-looking statements as actual results may vary materially from the forward-looking statements. WestJet does not undertake to update any forward-looking statements, except as is required by law.

About WestJet
WestJet is Canada's most preferred airline, offering scheduled service to 81 destinations in North America, Central America and the Caribbean. Powered by an award-winning culture of care, WestJet has pioneered low-cost flying in Canada. Recognized nationally as a top employer, WestJet now has more than 9,000 WestJetters across Canada. Operating a fleet of 100 Boeing Next-Generation 737 aircraft with future confirmed deliveries for an additional 35 Boeing Next-Generation 737 aircraft through 2018 and plans to launch a low-cost regional airline in 2013, WestJet strives to be one of the five most successful international airlines in the world.

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