WestJet reports April load factor of 83.6 per cent

Airline achieves 11.8 per cent increase in revenue passenger miles

CALGARY, May 4 /CNW/ - WestJet today announced April traffic results with a load factor of 83.6 per cent. Revenue passenger miles (RPMs), or traffic, increased 11.8 per cent year over year, and capacity, measured in available seat miles (ASMs), grew 12.3 per cent over the same period.

"We are very happy with the double-digit traffic growth and this month's load factor, which is our second highest April ever," commented WestJet President and CEO Gregg Saretsky. "We are optimistic that demand for air travel will remain strong and the market will continue to absorb the fare levels necessary to offset elevated fuel costs."

    <<
                         April 2011 traffic results

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                          April 2011        April 2010        Change
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Load factor           83.6%             84.0%             (0.4 pts.)
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    ASMs (billions)       1.785             1.589             12.3%
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    RPMs (billions)       1.492             1.335             11.8%
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
                          Year-to-date      Year-to-date
                          2011              2010              Change
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Load factor           82.4%             82.3%             0.1 pts.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    ASMs (billions)       7.015             6.289             11.5%
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    RPMs (billions)       5.783             5.175             11.7%
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    >>

Leading into the Easter weekend, WestJet set a new single-day record for the airline by flying more than 51,000 guests on April 21, 2011. "Demand has kept pace with our capacity growth so far this year as consumers are consistently drawn towards our caring guest experience," said Gregg Saretsky. "Our people truly set us apart and are the reason guests continue to choose WestJet."

May marks the beginning of the summer flying season. Some of the highlights of WestJet's 2011 summer schedule include launching service into Orange County-Anaheim, California, from Vancouver and Calgary, daily service from Vancouver to Maui and Honolulu, and daily service between Toronto and Cancun. Domestic highlights include expanded transcontinental service and improved frequencies among the eastern triangle cities of Toronto, Montreal and Ottawa.

Caution regarding forward-looking statements

Certain information set forth in this press release, including information regarding demand for air travel, pricing, demand and capacity growth and summer schedule growth plans, 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, competitive environment and general economic conditions. These and additional risk factors are discussed in WestJet's most recent annual information form (AIF) and in other documents WestJet files from time to time with securities regulatory authorities, which are available under WestJet's profile on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.

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 favourite airline, offering scheduled service throughout its 71-city North American and Caribbean network. Inducted into Canada's Most Admired Corporate Cultures Hall of Fame and named one of Canada's best employers, WestJet pioneered low-cost flying in Canada. Named a J.D. Power 2011 Customer Service Champion, WestJet offers increased legroom, leather seats and live seatback television provided by Bell TV on its modern fleet of 95 Boeing Next-Generation 737 aircraft. With future confirmed deliveries for an additional 40 aircraft through 2018, WestJet strives to be one of the five most successful international airlines in the world.

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SOURCE WestJet

For further information: WestJet Media Relations: 1-888-WJ-4-NEWS (1-888-954-6397), Email: media@westjet.com; WestJet Investor Relations: 1-877-493-7853, Email: investor_relations@westjet.com; Website: www.westjet.com


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