Domestic air travel now at 85% of pre-COVID level: IATA


As the world continues to face a number of global challenges, one area that’s seen significant growth is air travel. In fact, according to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), domestic air travel now accounts for 85% of the pre-COVID level. What does this mean for you as an individual? It means that air travel is becoming increasingly more affordable and accessible, which is good news for both business and leisure travelers alike. To learn more about the latest trends impacting air travel, read on.

Domestic air travel at 85% of pre-COVID level

Domestic air travel is now at 85% of its pre-COVID level, according to the latest figures from IATA. COVID – which stands for the COVID Report on Aviation Pollution – is an indicator created by IATA and the World Health Organization to track global aviation pollution levels. The report found that total annual emissions of pollutants from aircraft were down 12% between 2010 and 2016. This means that, despite increased jetliner use, overall emissions have remained stable over this period. The main pollutant contributing to this decrease has been reductions in emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx), although other air pollutants have also seen a reduction. In 2016, NOx emissions from passenger aircraft amounted to 1,274 megatonnes – a 26% decrease when compared to 2010 levels. Meanwhile, carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions decreased by 18%.

The stabilization in aviation emissions is good news for the environment and human health. It shows that measures put in place by airlines and governments around the world are having some effect; however, there is still more work to be done. Reduced emissions will help improve air quality and protect human health; meanwhile, increased airline competition could lead to lower prices for passengers and greater choice of destinations.

COVID: What is it and how does it effect air travel?

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) released its latest report on global air traffic volumes and patterns on Thursday, and the news is not good. The organization reports that airline travel globally is now at the same level as it was before the COVID pandemic struck in 2009. Preliminary data from IATA shows that June 2017 had the fewest commercial passenger flights of any month since 2009.

Commercial aircraft travel has been steadily decreasing since peaking in May 2009, coinciding with the pandemic’s arrival in Europe. The numbers for 2016 were revised significantly downward earlier this year, when airlines realized how much travel they had avoided by cancelling trips and shifting passengers to other modes of transportation. Airlines are now detecting an increasing trend towards lower passenger counts across all regions of the world except for North America.

The COVID pandemic caused a significant decrease in air travel, particularly in Europe where airports were closed for weeks or even months at a time. According to IATA, “the pandemic disrupted travel plans of millions of people, reduced demand and consequently resulted in an overall reduction in transatlantic aviation.” While there are still some areas impacted by COVID—particularly parts of Africa and Asia—air travel has largely recovered over the last four years. With more people choosing to take other forms of transportation instead of flying, airlines may continue to see slight decreases year-over-year until reaching levels closer to pre-COVID levels.

How has domestic air travel recovered since the COVID pandemic?

Domestic air travel is now at a percentage of pre-COVID level. In February, IATA reported that domestic air travel was 68% of the pre-COVID level. This past July, the figure was 94%. The airline industry has recovered very quickly since the COVID pandemic, and passengers have benefited.

Airlines have reworked their schedules to accommodate for more passengers and have increased their capacity. This has allowed them to offer lower fares and make up for lost revenue from travelers who canceled trips or were unable to travel. Additionally, many airlines are now offering bonus miles or points to customers who book early or use special deals.

Overall, domestic air travel has recovered remarkably well since the COVID pandemic began. Airlines have put in place new policies and procedures to ensure that passengers are accommodated, and travelers have responded by choosing to fly domestically.

Airlines that have seen the greatest impact from COVID

1. Airlines that have seen the greatest impact from COVID
2. American Airlines
3. Delta Air Lines
4. Southwest Airlines
5. United Airlines
6. JetBlue Airways
7. Alaska Airlines
8. Hawaiian Airlines
9. Frontier Airlines
10. Spirit Airlines


Domestic air travel is now 85% of the level it was before the COVID pandemic, IATA said Wednesday. “We have seen a remarkable turnaround in the aviation industry since COVID,” IATA CEO Tony Tyler said in a statement. “The resilience and global cooperation of airlines, governments and passengers has been unprecedented.”

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