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Coronavirus: impact on the aviation industry worldwide - statistics & facts

Since the beginning of 2020, more and more countries across the globe shut down borders and limit domestic travel as a response to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. Thus, cancelling almost all flights to control the spread of the virus has affected the entire airline industry globally.

During the week of October 12, 2020, the number of scheduled flights worldwide decreased by 46.4 percent in comparison with the week of October 14, 2019 with high cross-country variations. In some countries the year-on-year decline in the number of passenger flights reached over 90 percent, for instance, reaching 98 percent decline in Italy. On March 22, 2020, airline capacity in Europe was down by almost 88 percent compared to the same day in 2019. In the first half of 2020, global air passenger declined by approximately 1.2 billion passengers. Therefore, the international airline industry is estimated to experience a severe V-shaped decline throughout 2020 in terms of capacity, with cross-regional variances with respect to the severity of the decline. For example, the passenger capacity decline is estimated to hit Europe the worst. In the second quarter of 2020, a 90 percent decline in European passenger traffic is estimated, if the same travel restrictions will continue to prevail.

Considering severe declines on the demand side, as of March 2, 2020, there were two loss scenarios developed by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) - limited and extensive. According to the extensive impact scenario, the initial containment measures taken by the governments were estimated to affect the global aviation industry by approximately 130 billion U.S. dollars loss of annual passenger revenue. Nonetheless, as the outbreak exceeds 40.6 million infected people around the globe, IATA updated its estimates. Airline passenger revenue loss estimates now reach 314 billion U.S. dollars globally. On the other hand, airports loose as a result of this crisis as well. In 2020, an estimated revenue loss of around 21 and 38.8 billion U.S. dollars in North America and Europe respectively are expected.

For further information about the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, please visit our dedicated Fact and Figures page.

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Coronavirus: impact on the aviation industry worldwide

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Impact on passenger aviation

Impact on air cargo

Impact on airlines and airports

Public opinion


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