IATA: global passenger traffic came close to its 2019 level in July

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Airlines around the world have experienced a activity “solid» in July 2023their peak period in the Northern Hemisphere, reaching 95.6% of the levels of the same month of 2019according to the monthly report of theInternational Air Transport Association (IATA).

Domestic flights have once again driven the sector upwards. Calculated in revenue passenger kilometers (RPK), one of the sector’s benchmark indices, the activity of these rotations reached on average 108.3% of that of the same period before the crisis sanitary. The RPKs of domestic flights have exceeded their pre-Covid levels since April, notably a consequence of the end of travel restriction policies in China, where domestic flight activity reached 122.5% in July of the same month of 2019.

International flights nevertheless remained behind in July: even up 29.6% year-on-year, they only returned 88.7% of the RPK levels of the same month four years ago. On the other hand, the aircraft occupancy rate, at 85.7%, is the highest ever recorded by IATA on these rotations.

Summer in the Northern Hemisphere meets expectations of very high traffic demand. Although the industry was largely ready to adapt to a return to pre-pandemic activity levels, the same unfortunately cannot be said of our infrastructure providers. The performance of some of the major air navigation service providers, for example, has been deeply disappointing for many reasons, from understaffing to the fiasco of the UK’s NATS failure“, declared Willie Walsh, Director General of IATA, referring to the giant breakdown of British air traffic control which occurred on August 28.

But even more worrying are the political decisions taken by some governments – including Mexico and the Netherlands – to impose capacity reductions at their main hubs, which will almost certainly destroy jobs and harm local and national economies. The numbers continue to tell us that people want and need air connectivity. That’s why governments should work with us to ensure people can travel safely, sustainably and efficiently», Estimated Willie Walsh.

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