More and more airlines are forced to shut down as the effects of the coronavirus on the aviation industry take its toll. Air travel has indeed been among the hardest hit due to the global COVID-19 pandemic. Millions and millions of people are on lockdown and there are travel bans left and right. The COVID-19 pandemic is forcing airlines to shut down. Our aircraft dispatcher school in Fort Lauderdale is here to share how coronavirus has affected airlines.
COVID-19 Impact on Aviation Industry: Airlines Are Forced to Shut Down
Over 95% of airlines have reported a drop in air travel as the COVID-19 pandemic rapidly spreads. With direct orders to stay home and follow strict social distancing guidelines, that means almost no one worldwide is flying or traveling. In fact, the Transportation Security Administration screened over 2.5 million passengers across the US in 2019, but in April, that number dropped to a 10-year low of roughly 90,000.1
The effects of COVID-19 on airlines started becoming evident around January as the number of flights to China and other areas in Asia were drastically reduced.2 As the novel coronavirus became more widespread, passengers were plagued with anxiety as they began to fear air travel. Week by week, the airlines were rapidly losing their customers, people were canceling or rescheduling vacations or travel plans and opted to stay home where it was safe. Air travel is one of the most common ways of traveling great distances, but it also means people travel in proximity to others who could be carriers or infected themselves with viruses and other illnesses. Flyers were also delaying their ticket purchase due to the overwhelming uncertainty of COVID-19.2 Simply put, the coronavirus has affected airlines and caused quite a ruckus.
Countries all over the world, including the United States, have closed their borders, states are on lockdown, and there are strict guidelines in place that limit travel plans.2 Airlines are suspending routes and locking up their planes. Some are even going bankrupt due to the COVID-19 crisis. The main passengers at the moment are doctors and nurses traveling to help those in need. Unfortunately, however, airlines are taking a direct hit because their business models are not designed with so few flights.3
The future of airlines is currently unknown but should hopefully take flight again soon. Smaller airlines have already collapsed and it’s not unlikely others will follow during this crisis, but there’s hope that the aviation industry will bounce back as many US airlines embrace the stimulus bill, which included $58 billion in aid.2
- APM Research Labs – S. Air Travel Plummets Amid Coronavirus Shutdown
- Business Insider – Coronavirus: Airlines That Went Bankrupt or Collapsed Due to COVID-19
- WWMT – Airlines and TSA Report 96% Drop in Air Travel as COVID-19 Pandemic Continues