Meeting Covid-19’s challenge to business aviation


At Business Airport International we plan our editorial calendar. For example, April’s editorial included a feature about flying to June’s European football championships, coverage of the forthcoming EBACE show in Geneva and a report from an event about urban air mobility in London.

Our editorial plan, like almost all other plans, was thrown into disarray by coronavirus. Similarly to almost all other events, the ones mentioned above were either canceled or postponed. Coronavirus’s inexorable spread to the West from China has caused panic and the implementation of radical measures by governments, the like of which have never been seen before during peacetime.

The aviation sector is bearing the brunt. Airports, airlines, charter operators and FBOs alike are scaling back operations and face shutting down completely over the coming months. Worryingly, most experts predict that the worst is yet to come.

Some operators did experience a short term gain from individuals flying to escape the virus. People were initially traveling west from China to escape Covid-19. Now they are flying back east. As ever, business aviation excels in meeting the needs of customers that commercial airlines cannot fulfil. However, industry experts expect this gain to be short term.

However, longer term it is widely anticipated that the negative economic effects of coronavirus will be substantial and hurt the business aviation sector severely.

It remains to be seen exactly how bad the impact of the virus will be on the world outside of China and aviation. As the pandemic continues, many parts of business aviation continue to function, transporting vital medical staff and goods as well as patients. Hygiene and quarantine rules complicate things considerably, but are necessary to reduce risk to operational staff.

Notably, as the industry acknowledges the tough times ahead, we are beginning to see in the industry an unprecedented effort to collaborate and help each other out through the crisis. At Business Airport International we will continue to cover the news and issues that matter the most to those in the business aviation industry, including coronavirus and its impact. We aim to provide a service to the industry through these troubled times as a communications platform.

To that end, if anyone would like to highlight any initiatives designed to alleviate the impact of coronavirus or raise a challenge that business aviation could help with, please contact me at the email address below. We hope you and those close to you stay safe and healthy during the coming months.


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About Author


Ben has worked all of his career as a journalist and now editor, covering almost all aspects of technology, engineering and industry. In the last 20 years he has written on subjects from nuclear submarines and autonomous cars to future design and manufacturing technologies and commercial aviation. Latterly editor of a leading engineering magazine, he brings an eye for a great story and lots of experience to the team.

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