IATA: New Omicron restrictions impede air travel recovery

IATA: New Omicron restrictions impede air travel recovery
Willie Walsh, IATA’s Director General

International Passenger Markets

  • European carriers’ November international traffic declined 43.7% versus November 2019, much improved compared to the 49.4%% decrease in October versus the same month in 2019. Capacity dropped 36.3% and load factor fell 9.7 percentage points to 74.3%.
  • -Pacific airlines saw their November international traffic fall 89.5% compared to November 2019, slightly improved from the 92.0% drop registered in October 2021 versus October 2019. Capacity dropped 80.0% and the load factor was down 37.8 percentage points to 42.2%, the lowest among regions.
  • Middle Eastern airlines had a 54.4% demand drop in November compared to November 2019, well up compared to the 60.9% decrease in October, versus the same month in 2019. Capacity declined 45.5%, and load factor slipped 11.9 percentage points to 61.3%. 
  • North American carriers experienced a 44.8% traffic drop in November versus the 2019 period, significantly improved over the 56.7% decline in October compared to October 2019. Capacity dropped 35.6%, and load factor fell 11.6 percentage points to 69.6%.
  • Latin American airlines saw a 47.2% drop in November traffic, compared to the same month in 2019, a marked upturn over the 54.6% decline in October compared to October 2019. November capacity fell 46.6% and load factor dropped 0.9 percentage points to 81.3%, which was the highest load factor among the regions for the 14th consecutive month. 
  • African airlines’ traffic fell 56.8% in November versus two years’ ago, improved over the 59.8% decline in October compared to October 2019. November capacity was down 49.6% and load factor declined 10.1 percentage points to 60.3%.

Domestic Passenger Markets

  • Australia remained at the bottom of the domestic RPK chart for the fifth consecutive month with RPKs 71.6% below 2019, albeit this was improved from a 78.5% decline in October, owing to the reopening of some internal borders.
  • US domestic traffic was down just 6.0% compared November 2019 – improved from an 11.1% fall in October, thanks in part to strong Thanksgiving holiday traffic. 

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