I am trying to find the meaning for a group of words used by professionals in the airline industry and this was one of them.

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    $\begingroup$ Where did you encounter this word? Some context would help. $\endgroup$
    – V2Blast
    Sep 15, 2021 at 15:39
  • $\begingroup$ In my college Aviation Management course. The course is called Airline Management $\endgroup$ Sep 15, 2021 at 15:41
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    $\begingroup$ Potentially related: What is the origin of the term "pax"? $\endgroup$
    – V2Blast
    Sep 15, 2021 at 15:45
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    $\begingroup$ This really isn't an aviation question. It could just as well apply to passengers on trains or buses. $\endgroup$
    – jamesqf
    Sep 15, 2021 at 17:10
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    $\begingroup$ @jamesqf knowing that this term is applicable outside of aviation requires knowing what the term means. Since people are more likely to come across the term in the context of aviation (pilots spend much more time than bus or train operators talking about their job on the internet), this is a reasonable stack to ask on. $\endgroup$ Sep 16, 2021 at 14:37

1 Answer 1


Although the meaning might be different depending on context it most likely means "passengers passing through a stop without leaving" ("pax" is shorthand for "passengers", "thru" is shorthand for "through")

So if you have a flight from A to B and then to C and you have passengers flying from A to B and also passengers from A to C, then when you land at B, the passengers from A to B are the disembarking passengers and the passengers from A to C will be your "thru pax": They simply stay on board (or might temporarily get off the plane while it is cleaned or fueled but still continue on the same flight afterwards).

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    $\begingroup$ And, after the A-B pax have deplaned, the remaining passengers need to be counted... both to ensure that nobody deplaned too soon, and also that nobody is getting a a longer trip than they'd paid for. "How many thru pax did you count?" "Seven." "Okay, that's what we're expecting. We'll start boarding in about 15 minutes." $\endgroup$
    – Ralph J
    Sep 15, 2021 at 17:03
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    $\begingroup$ Good answer. It seems obvious, but a suggestion would be to maybe emphasize and define the actual abbreviations themselves. (i.e. "thru" = through, and "pax" = passenger) Again, this is obvious enough to most, but then if you knew this to begin with wouldn't the question almost answer itself?! $\endgroup$ Sep 15, 2021 at 18:18

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