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Wed, 6 January 2021

Asia Pacific Airlines Carried Just 1.4 Million Int. Passengers in November

Preliminary November 2020 traffic figures from the Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA) highlight the lack of progress in the revival of international travel with demand still held back by ongoing border restrictions amid a resurgence of COVID19 infections in various countries.

Air cargo markets were a silver lining for the regions carriers, supported by recovery in global manufacturing activity.

Airlines in Asia Pacific carried 1.4 million international passengers in November, just 4.6% of the 30.8 million recorded in the same month of 2019. Offered seat capacity was comparatively higher at 12.5% whilst international passenger load factors averaged 30% for the month, far below the 80% achieved in November 2019.

Malaysia Airlines Airbus A350-900 reg: 9M-MAB. Picture by Steven Howard of TravelNewsAsia.com Click to enlarge.

International trade flows continued to rebound in November, buoyed by an acceleration in new export orders. As a result, cargo volumes carried by the regions airlines increased for the third consecutive month, although demand as measured in freight tonne kilometres (FTK) was still down 11.3% year-on-year.

 Airlines increased capacity by deploying converted passenger aircraft and maximising dedicated freighter utilisation, helping to ease capacity shortages as reflected in the 6.7 percentage point increase in the international freight load factor to average 69.5% for the month.

Whilst the recovery in global economic activity has broadened across sectors, international travel remains crippled by border closures affecting 60% of Asia Pacific destinations. The recent escalation in COVID-19 cases and emergence of variant strains, have resulted in the re-imposition of stricter travel restrictions by several States, said AAPA Director General Mr. Subhas Menon. The near-term outlook for the airline industry remains extremely challenging. Governments need to move ahead with plans to implement harmonised testing protocols as a part of a multi-layered and risk-based approach towards safely restoring air travel, at the same time as vaccinations are rolled out across the world.

See latest Travel Industry News, Video Interviews, Podcasts and other news regarding: COVID19, AAPA, RPK, FTK, Traffic.

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