In the history of aviation there as never been such a downturn. 2020 will certainly be remembered as the worst year in aviation history. Airlines are set to lose $84.3 billion in 2020 and revenues will fall by more 50%, (source of figures IATA).
Closed borders and the reduction in passengers is the driving force behind the losses. Travel is 95% down since 2019 with the lowest point being April 2020.
A truly unusual phenomenon where neither the demand nor the supply is to blame. The demand for travel is there, but halted by border restrictions. And phobic travellers the world over are getting anxious about the effects of the restrictions and quarantining.
Parked aircraft are creating a space issue for airlines with so many being grounded.
But for some parts of our world it’s been a welcome respite. Over tourism has driven many Venetians to despair with large ship liners polluting the Adriatic, and leaving tons of rubbish. Huge crowds have meant that even antiquities were being eroded from the moisture of tourist breath.
Tourism is one of the biggest industries of the 21st century, generating huge amounts of revenue and employing many, but there is always a price to pay the tourist erosion of unique cities such as Venice. During the lockdown we saw the Adriatic and canals pollution free and waters clear.
In the UK, the government has now created several ‘air bridges’ starting from 6 July, allowing eager phobics to travel to France, Italy, Greece, Turkey, Spain and Norway. However, it won’t exactly be business as usual — hotels in popular holiday resorts like Spain may have to operate at half capacity due to physical distancing efforts.
There are hungry phobics just itching to get holidaying. Travel company bargains are presently reducing fares by 70 percent and some holiday companies have seen a rise of 50 per cent in bookings.
Could this the beginning of travel taking off again? Corporates won’t be travelling until end of 2020, maybe not until next year. Many companies are continuing a ban on travel.
But for the phobic traveller it’s exciting news. While the hunt for bargains begins, and the long wait rewarded with cheap flights and packages, after lockdown what better to look forward to than the sun and sea.
For The Phobic Traveller, this is Neda Dorudi
Main image: Planes at Logan Airport – Constitution Beach – East Boston – 2014-06-01, Bill Damon, Flickr Creative Commons