Although leisure air travel received the green light to officially restart on 17 May 2021, travel restrictions as part of the UK’s traffic light system, like vaccination certificates or mandatory testing, were continuing to hinder the recovery of aviation. Low-cost airlines, which are mostly associated with short-haul travel, and have numerous destinations across Europe, remain ahead of the curve in terms of recovery for various reasons.
Despite demand for short-haul travel picking up in 2021, customers are still cautious about travelling long-haul. Scheduled airlines continue to be the hardest-hit category in air travel, and will be recording a weaker increase in 2021 than airlines overall as restrictions and uncertainty keep demand for long-haul travel low.
The sales of overall air travel are expected to return to pre-pandemic levels in 2024 in current value terms, but the number of air passengers will not have reached 2019 levels again before the end of the forecast period. As the various areas of air travel were impacted differently by the pandemic, they are also following different recovery timelines.
Sustainability and adoption of digital solutions remain key in shaping the future of air travel. Airlines are increasingly investing in the incorporation of technological solutions in their business operations.
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Airlines covers sales made to country residents (outbound and domestic tourists) and excludes sales to incoming tourists. Please note that airlines sales made to country residents when they are travelling abroad or through foreign websites or apps are also included and will be considered under the country of residence. The total amount paid for a flight after taxes and other charges is included. The return flight leg is included as well as the total amount paid for a flight ticket. Value sales exclude all forms of transit. Euromonitor International considers airline capacity and passengers carried in terms of enplanement based on scheduled flights. A passenger whose flight stops mid-route to pick up more passengers but continues with the same aircraft/flight number would be counted as one enplanement. A passenger who switches flights to another airline or aircraft with a new flight number mid-journey would be considered as two enplanements. Enplanements are not the same as number of seats sold or seat bookings, as the latter both include all bookings and do not exclude no-shows and cancellations. Direct transit passengers are excluded, eg those who continue on the same flight. Other transit passengers are included where passengers change plane with a new flight number. Air passengers carried relate directly to air value sales, where domestic and outbound travellers are only included. As such value and volume data in both sizes and shares is aligned and exclude the inbound component.See All of Our Definitions
This report originates from Passport, our Airlines research and analysis database.
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