Recently released data show that employment in the airline industry continued its climb for the fifth consecutive month in April. According to the U.S. Bureau of Transportation Statistics, 384,265 people were working in the sector, an increase of nearly 400 over the previous month. Compared to April of last year, employment grew about 1 percent.
This is the highest number of employees working for airlines since October 2012, though the number still does not match the peak seen in 2001 or the employment witnessed before jobs were lost to the recession in 2008. Nearly 200,000 more workers will be needed before those rates return.
Most airlines reported increased hiring. Employment at the five major network carriers, which together account for two-thirds of the industry's workers, grew 0.4 percent between April 2013 and April 2014. According to the data, four of the six low-cost carriers surveyed reported job growth, as did 10 of the 13 regional airlines.
Rising employment in other sectors is expected to increase the number of people traveling this summer, which could provide a further boost to the airline industry. Money News reported that several major carriers, such as Delta and United, saw more passengers in May and expect the trend to continue.