Business aviation recovery hits the buffers as some travel restrictions re-imposed 


Global business aviation traffic has lost over 86,000 sectors in July compared to same period July 2019, which equates to 20% decline, an improvement on the 30% deficit in June year on year, but a step backwards from mid-July when activity was approaching 85% of last year’s volumes.

The reversal is clearest in the US, where 7-day average daily activity has slipped from 7,300 sectors at the start of the month to around 6,800 in recent days.

The declines are weighted towards weekdays, down by at least a quarter, compared to weekends, where sectors are more robust.

For North America as a whole, the July activity trend is – 23% month-to-date, which reflects softening activity in Canada and Mexico. 

Several US States have reversed course on reopening the economy in July as virus infections have surged. This is the main break on recovery in flight activity, with business aviation flights in California, Texas, Michigan, North Carolina stalled at 20% below, and New York activity still stubbornly down by a third year on year.

The East Coast hubs are really struggling, with White Plains almost 40% down for the month, Teterboro still 60% shy of normal July activity. Gains in year on year activity out of Florida and Arizona persevere, but they’re barely 1% up year on year.

Palm Beach is an outlier, with activity gains of 20%. There are some other exceptions, with flights out of Aspen up by 18% this month, Denver only 2% down, Salt Lake City 2% up, and Van Nuys airport seeing resilient activity, flights trailing by 6% so far in July. 

The European market continues to see stronger recovery in July, with regional activity now only 14% down. France has registered over 10K flights in the month, 12.5% under par, and Germany is just 2.5% below normal for July. Switzerland has a similarly flat trend, and several countries – Austria, Belgium, Croatia – are seeing more flights this month than in July 2019.

Spain has shown the strongest recovery this month, with the domestic market, 40% of its traffic, seeing more than 10% growth. Mallorca’s flights are up 22% and Ibiza is only 8% under par this month. UK visits to Spain are up 12%, arrivals from Switzerland up 29%, from Germany, 40% growth.

This picture may change following the re-imposition of UK quarantine on travellers to Spain. 

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About Author


Paige is an experienced journalist and editor who started her career covering the building and architecture sector. After several years writing and editing online and print articles for leading journals in this sector, she is bringing her thorough approach to technical content to covering aerospace engineering. In her spare time she enjoys traveling and is always planning her next trip

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