The Sharjah-based low-cost carrier Air Arabia has doubled profits for the third quarter this year compared with the same period in 2011.

The airline reported net profits of AED226m ($61.5m), for the three months ending in September. This compares with profits of AED100m recorded last year.

Turnover for the third quarter reached AED836m, marking an increase of 19 per cent.

A total of 1.3 billion passengers used the airline in the third quarter, an increase of 14 per cent on last year’s figures. The average seat load factor, or the number of passengers carried as a percentage of available seats, reached 82 per cent.

Air Arabia’s net profit for the first nine months of the year hit AED342m, an increase of 75 per cent compared with last year’s figure of AED195m. The airline said turnover increased 21 per cent, reaching AED2.2bn.

A total of 3.9 million passengers travelled on Air Arabia during the first nine months of the year.

Air Arabia’s results follow news that Dubai-based Emirates airlines has doubled its profits for the first half of 2012. Abu Dhabi’s Etihad Airways reported a 19 per cent increase in its third quarter revenues, recording revenues of $1.3bn.