Air travel rebound fails to materialise in Europe – Bain

By Kate Birch
Airlines are struggling to return to pre-pandemic passenger volumes, with Europe remaining flat as uncertainty continues as Covid cases rise – Bain insight

While vaccine rollouts across the globe in 2020 raised hopes of an air traffic rebound, that has failed to materialise according to the latest insight from consultants Bain. 

Bain publishes monthly updates on the state of the commercial air travel industry and it currently makes depressing reading for airlines, with revenue in 2021 predicted to remain flat and around the same level as 2020.

In Europe, the recovery has flattened since the summer, but Bain analysts predict slight improvement as travel restrictions continue to loosen, such as in the UK. However, the situation in Europe is unpredictable with some countries entering new lockdowns as cases surge.

Bain predicts that the EU as a whole is expected to return to 79% of July 2019 volumes by July 2022, with Germany hitting 79%, the UK 68% and France 69%. 

Regionally, Asia is predicted to show greater recovery, as China especially rebounds after Covid-19 lockdowns curbed air traffic. China air traffic will return to 100% of July 2019 volume by July 2022. Indonesia will bounce back to 85%, South Korea 75%, Japan 68%, India 56% and Australia 54%.

The US’s recent reopening to vaccinated international travellers should also boost global air travel, as it reaches 83% of July 2019 levels by July 2022.

The report states that projected global revenue in the baseline recovery scenario outlined above continues to fall – by an additional US$5 billion to just US$230 billion in total. That represents just 34% of total revenue from 2019. In 2020, that figure was 33%.

 

 

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