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The asymmetric effects of income and fuel price on air transport demand


  • Wadud, Zia


Forecasts of passenger demand are an important parameter for aviation planners. Air transport demand models typically assume a perfectly reversible impact of the demand drivers. However, there are reasons to believe that the impacts of some of the demand drivers such as fuel price or income on air transport demand may not be perfectly reversible. Two types of imperfect reversibility, namely asymmetry and hysteresis, are possible. Asymmetry refers to the differences in the demand impacts of a rising price or income from that of a falling price or income. Hysteresis refers to the dependence of the impacts of changing price or income on previous history, especially on previous maximum price or income. We use US time series data and decompose each of fuel price and income into three component series to develop an econometric model for air transport demand that is capable of capturing the potential imperfectly reversible relationships and test for the presence or absence of reversibility. We find statistical evidence of asymmetry and hysteresis – for both, prices and income – in air transport demand. Implications for policy and practice are then discussed.

Suggested Citation

  • Wadud, Zia, 2014. "The asymmetric effects of income and fuel price on air transport demand," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 65(C), pages 92-102.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:transa:v:65:y:2014:i:c:p:92-102 DOI: 10.1016/j.tra.2014.04.001

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    Cited by:

    1. Lo, Winnie Wai Ling & Wan, Yulai & Zhang, Anming, 2015. "Empirical estimation of price and income elasticities of air cargo demand: The case of Hong Kong," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 78(C), pages 309-324.
    2. Wadud, Zia, 2015. "Imperfect reversibility of air transport demand: Effects of air fare, fuel prices and price transmission," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 72(C), pages 16-26.
    3. Wadud, Zia, 2015. "Decomposing the drivers of aviation fuel demand using simultaneous equation models," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 83(C), pages 551-559.


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