The latest update from ch-aviation capacities shows that airlines around the world have further reduced their schedules. The scheduled seat capacity for the current week from March 30 to April 5 is 49.1 million seats. Two weeks ago, in the middle of March, airlines had more than 100 million seats scheduled for the current week.
The capacity reductions continue – our look last week at airline schedules indicated 21 million weekly seats vanished from the schedules.
One thing still hasn’t changed: the world’s airlines still believe the recovery will happen in the beginning of May. Still, airlines do not believe 100 million weekly seats may be needed in May.
The situation remains dynamic as many governments impose traffic limitations and airlines try to understand the real capacity needs for current demand.
Airlines are relatively more optimistic with the largest market for the industry, Asia. Airlines expect that traffic in Asia may return by the end of April.
In North America we see airlines are not that fast reacting to immediate capacity cuts but companies expect the market will shrink in upcoming weeks. The scheduled capacity for the next 3 weeks are smaller than the current week. Still, there is plenty of optimism for the month of May or there is a sign it will take more time for the airlines to understand the demand patterns. It is highly likely North American airlines will review the demand and expand the reductions.
Europe got the highest drop in scheduled capacity. The capacity for the current week is 5 million seats when airlines believe there was a demand for 22 million seats two weeks ago. The capacity growth curves in Europe remain with steep growth during April toward expected recovery in May. Even though most airline executives say they do not believe in recovery in May, the airline schedules are still there.
Despite the fact South America is relatively less impacted by COVID-19, the capacity is heavily reduced by the airlines to meet lack of demand and respond to government- imposed limitations. A sharp increase in capacity is still scheduled for the beginning of May, but this is subject to revision as the situation continues to develop.
We noticed very similar pattern in Africa, like in South America:
The airlines serving Oceania are less optimistic with the timing of recovery. The scheduled capacity curve shows an incline only in the second half of May. Nevertheless, all schedules are subject to change these days.
We see airlines are changing schedules really fast. Our “Route News” (available for ch-aviation schedules subscribers) are updated every week to inform you about the recent changes in route cancellations.
We will continue to monitor the situation on capacities and will post on our blog. Follow us here and follow our #chaviationcovid19updates on Linkedin.