LONDON – According to data from RadarBox.com, total commercial flights globally this week are expected to grow by 10% compared to the same period last year.
More routes are being added to the schedules as the industry prepares for the Winter 2022/23 season, with Thanksgiving, Christmas, and other holidays expected to be busy periods.
Without further ado, let’s get into the numbers:
For October 21-29, which is this week, around 90,206 flights will occur based on a seven-day rolling average provided by the flight tracking company.
This represents a 10.06% increase compared to the same period when it was 81,963 flights. 2022’s figure is still around 14,000 flights short of pre-pandemic levels.
Below is a list of the last four weeks’ worth of data:
|September 24-October 1
What has been observed from the last four weeks’ worth of data is that the movement numbers are on a decline, irrespective of a percentage increase compared to the same period last year.
We also saw that 2021’s numbers during this period gradually climbed as well, which indicates that some external factors are affecting 2022’s numbers.
What Are The External Factors?
There are quite a few external factors that the airline industry is currently juggling with at this present time. They are as follows:
- COVID-19: Some countries around the world, such as China & Hong Kong, are still dealing with the adverse effects of the pandemic, which is slowing growth within their respective airline sectors. As mentioned back in September by AviationSource, China continues to lag behind the rest of the world when it comes to the restoration of travel.
- High Fuel Costs: These costs are related to the Ukraine Crisis, but this is also an individual problem in itself. The price of fuel has gone up exponentially, with JetBlue noting in their 3Q22 findings that the cost has increased from $2.06 per gallon in 3Q19 to $3.84 in the quarter just gone.
- Ukraine Crisis: The Ukraine Crisis has caused airspace closures as well as an increase in the cost of gas and fuel, as Russia has a significant portion that it used to sell to the West before this crisis began. The number of flights in Russia is declining due to sanctions, especially with Moscow Sheremeteyovo Airport reporting a 25% drop in movements in the last couple of weeks.
- Global Recession: The rise in global interest rates and inflation is beginning to put the global economy into a nosedive, with a recession likely to hit very soon. We can expect that airlines will continue to cut routes, especially if it means not having to teeter on the brink of life or death. British Airways is an example of mass cancellations, with the airline canceling 10,000 flights back in August.
Whilst 2022’s numbers are higher than 2021’s; there is a chance that they could drop down to 2021’s numbers, especially if the external factors continue to affect the industry.
The Winter period is always quite a volatile time for the industry, with bankruptcies normally rife.
With a mix of COVID-19, Ukraine, and a global recession to contend with, it’s going to be interesting to see who comes out the other side of this.