United Airlines Inc. released its third-quarter financial results, revealing significant reductions in jet fuel prices and associated costs. The airline spent $3.342 billion on fuel during the quarter, marking an 11% drop from the previous year. Over the first nine months of the year, fuel expenses decreased by 4.7% compared to the same period in 2021.
Fuel costs were reported at $2.95/gal for the quarter, a notable decrease from the previous year’s $3.81/gal. The average fuel price for United so far this year is $2.97/gal, showing a decline of over 19% from last year’s average of $3.67/gal.
With air travel demand steadily recovering post-pandemic, United saw a 14.4% increase in total passengers flown compared to last year. Over the first nine months of the year, the airline experienced an impressive surge in passengers flown, with a growth rate of over 16% compared to the same timeframe in 2021.
United also reported a 14.6% increase in revenue passenger miles (RPMs) for the third quarter compared to last year. Year-to-date, the company’s RPMs have risen by nearly 21%, further indicating the strong rebound in air travel demand following the pandemic.
The airline’s available seat miles witnessed a significant jump as well, increasing by 15.7% in the third quarter compared to last year. Over the first nine months of the year, available seat miles rose by 18.5% when comparing the same timeframe in 2021.
United achieved a quarterly pre-tax income of $1.5 billion, with a pre-tax margin of 10.3% and diluted earnings per share of $3.42. The company’s third-quarter top line revenue also saw an impressive growth rate of 12.5% compared to the previous year, marking a record revenue quarter for United.
The airline highlighted its strong performance in close-in bookings during August and September, with both months surpassing year-to-year demand.