Air traffic – as few passengers as in 1971 – economy

Travel restrictions linked to the pandemic hit passenger air traffic in Germany more than in other countries in the first half of the year. Demand from German airlines was 85% lower than before the 2019 crisis, the Federal Association of the German Aviation Industry (BDL) said. Across Europe, the minus was just under 78 percent, while the global drop was 67 percent. “The last time we had so few passengers at German airports was in 1971,” said Matthias von Randow, CEO of BDL. “It is the deepest break in the history of civil aviation.” A different picture emerged for air freight: freight volume increased by eleven percent from January to June compared to the first half of 2019 and therefore more significantly than the European average of five percent. The turnover of the airlines and airports represented by BDL did not decline as sharply as the traffic performance of 63 percent in the first half of the year. The number of employees is now 10% below 2019 levels. “On the positive side, demand has increased significantly since the summer,” said von Randow. In particular, passenger flights to Turkey, Greece, Portugal and Spain are increasing. If the trend continues, 2021 could reach around 33% of the 2019 level.

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