International air travel will not return to normal until 2023, says top industry experts
15 May 2020, 12:10
Holidaymakers are expected to be waiting for sometime before air travel returns to a 'normal' state.
International air travel may not return to normal until 2023, The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has said.
The top industry body for air travel said that flights around the world are unlikely to be widespread for another three years.
Domestic travel, on the other hand, is expected to be up and running as usual again by the end of 2020 following the coronavirus pandemic across the world.
While this does not mean there will be no international air travel, it means that airlines are not expected to return to their usual passenger levels until 2023 – at the earliest.
Brian Pearce, IATA’s Chief Economist, said on the matter: “Covid’s effects on air travel are certainly going to last a number of years with no quick rebound to 2019 levels.”
There is also a chance that this expected date could be pushed back to 2024, that is if lockdown continues into the autumn months, or if there is another wave of the illness across the world.
Chief executive of the International Air Transport Association (IATA) Alexendre De Juniac said only 50 per cent of air travel will return by the end of 2020.
Speaking on ABC Breakfast, he said: "What we see is that things should come back to normal in 2023, which is later than our previous forecast.
“That shows the importance and the severity of this crisis on air transport.”
He added: “The impacts of the crisis on long-haul travel will be much more severe and of a longer duration than what is expected in domestic markets.
“Rebuilding passenger confidence will take longer. And even then, individual and corporate travellers are likely to carefully manage travel spend and stay closer to home.
“This makes globally agreed and implemented biosecurity standards for the travel process all the more critical."