Air Canada has published its first-quarter financial results for 2023.
The airline reported record first-quarter passenger revenues, which stood at CAD 4.088 billion, more than double what they recorded in the first quarter of 2022. Air Canada says this was made possible thanks to the industry’s continued recovery and, therefore, a 53% increase in the company’s capacity operated.
Notably, however, the airline still reported an operating loss of CAD 17 million, inching closer and closer to operating profits. However, this is ultimately a massive improvement again on 2022’s first quarter performance, which saw the company bring in CAD 550 million in losses.
The performance in 2022 was not aided by the winter lockdown and continued restrictions that hit the country and, therefore, Air Canada’s network.
All areas of the business contributed meaningfully during the quarter. Air Canada Cargo is expanding its network and fleet, Aeroplan is gaining more members and gross billings have increased 50% when compared to the first quarter of 2022, and Air Canada Vacations produced remarkable results. System yields improved approximately 9 per cent compared to the first quarter of 2022. We achieved a strong free cash flow* of nearly $1 billion. This will allow us to continue investing in our future, including by further deleveraging our balance sheet.Michael Rousseau, President and Chief Executive Officer of Air Canada.
Replicating capacity doubling at the airline fuel prices also increased to over CAD 1.3 billion. Meanwhile, the airline said its net profit stood at CAD 4 million for the quarter. But, again, another staggering improvement from 2022’s first quarter which saw them post close to CAD 1 billion in net losses.
Air Canada Cargo has seen an increase in its aircraft available in the past year with, as of March 31, 2023, six 767 freighters operational. However, one year prior, this stood at just one.