Air travel could beat pre-pandemic level by 2023: IATA

Credit: CC0 Public Domain

Global air passenger numbers could rebound from the coronavirus pandemic to top 2019 levels by 2023, the International Air Transport Association predicted on Wednesday.

With much of the world still suffering from the spread of the virus and , travellers are expected to number just 52 percent of the pre-crisis level this year, IATA forecast, rising to 88 percent next year.

But after surging past pre-pandemic numbers in 2023, the end of the decade could see annual levels of 5.6 billion , the industry body said.

At 1.8 billion, the number for 2020 was around the same as in 2003, according to the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

"We are in the deepest and gravest crisis in our history. But the rapidly growing vaccinated population and advancements in testing will return the freedom to fly in the months ahead," said IATA director general Willie Walsh.

"When that happens, people are going to want to travel."

Walsh pressed governments to move faster on measures to help air travel reopen.

In total the passenger shortfall from the coronavirus crisis will have cost the industry two to three years of growth over the decade, IATA added.

The industry body expects average annual growth in passenger numbers of 3.2 percent between 2019 and 2039.

© 2021 AFP

Citation: Air travel could beat pre-pandemic level by 2023: IATA (2021, May 26) retrieved 24 July 2024 from
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.

Explore further

Airlines face another bleak year as outlook worsens


Feedback to editors