A growing number of airlines across the planet started drastic fleet, network and staffing cuts in an effort to combat the economic impact of Coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic. Follow our updates: Airline COVID-19 capacity, network, staff cuts for 17-22MAR.

Our analysis of ch-aviation capacities shows most of the the capacity cut in scheduled flights it is not drastic and airlines remain optimistic flights to recover during Easter vacation period and will grow further preparing for the summer season.

We understand currently airline after airline is grounding their fleet or reducing capacity and we could expect further drop of scheduled flights before the end of the week. We will continue to monitor capacity situation in the beginning of next week.

We see scheduled capacity growth in Asia for next weeks which comes in line with our previous analysis showing recovery in China domestic market and growing number of active aircraft at Chinese airlines fleets.

South America, Africa and Oceania are relatively unaffected at the moment, but it is few times smaller markets compared to Asia, North America and Europe. Asia being the largest with around 40 million seats to depart each week, followed by North America (28 million) and Europe (27 million). South America is significantly smaller 5-million seats per week market when Africa and Oceania are even smaller.

We will continue to monitor schedule changes next week to understand what is the total capacity cut in different regions.

We recommend you to follow our news bulletin updated every hour to get latest understanding are the real plans for the airlines to react to existing situation.

We used ch-aviation capacities data for this analysis.

Follow our blog and our LinkedIn page for the latest data extracts on #chaviationcovid19updates.

In times like these, you need a source you can trust.

The situation around the world is changing every day and every hour when it comes to government-enforced restrictions, increased border controls or airline decisions to reduce or suspend their operations.

We are constantly monitoring the latest updates from 4 continents now and there are 5 articles being updated with the latest information with free access to everyone.

Refresh the following articles to get updates:

GLOBAL UPDATES BULLETIN: Airline COVID-19 capacity, network, staff cuts for 17-22MAR

EUROPE: European carriers suspend ops amid increased border controls

ASIA: Asian carriers hit as gov’ts restrict int’l flights

AFRICA: African gov’ts restrict int’l ops in bid to curb COVID-19

NORTH AMERICA: North American gov’ts clamp down on int’l ops

GLOBAL (archived, updated until March 17th, 2020): Global airlines cut capacity, staff, costs due to COVID-19

Follow our blog and our LinkedIn page for the latest data extracts on #chaviationcovid19updates.

Back in the middle of February this year, we looked at the groundings of aircraft by Chinese airlines. Our data team updates information every day and, as of February 12, 2020, we found that 1,215 aircraft operated by airlines from China, Hong Kong and Macao had been grounded.

The latest analysis of ch-aviation fleets advanced data shows the number of active aircraft in this group of countries started to increase again from the beginning of March.

But if we look at the split of countries, then China shows an even higher rate of recovery of active aircraft while the number of active aircraft in Hong Kong still goes down.

We will continue to monitor the aircraft activity further and we plan to release an update after a week.

At the same time, ch-aviation capacities data shows the growth of China domestic traffic.

Chinese airlines schedule to grow the number of seats in the domestic market by 50% during the next 7 weeks. Airlines had 8,4 million seats scheduled for the week from March 9th to 15th and currently have scheduled 12,7 million scheudled for the week April 20 to 26th.

We continue to monitor capacity shifts in China and we see the airlines reduced the number of seats scheduled for the current and the next weeks compared to capacity they had scheduled week before. But optimism is growing for a stronger recovery at the begining of April.

On 13th of March, we have covered in the ch-aviation PRO newsfeed that the Civil Aviation of China (CAAC) announced new support measures to aid the aviation industry affected by the ongoing COVID-19 epidemic. A total of 16 new measures include a reduction of fees at the airports, direct financial support, optimisation of licencing and schedule approval processes and others. Earlier in March, CAAC also announced subsidies for routes to stimulate demand in conjunction with the Ministry of Finance.

We follow 52 airlines operating domestic flights in China (41 of them operates passenger flights). The 10 largest airlines have about 70% of total scheduled capacity with China Southern Airlines, China Eastern Airlines and Air China having a double-digit percentage of market share.

 AirlineCapacity% of Total
1China Southern Airlines153160017,61%
2China Eastern Airlines99404111,43%
3Air China90673910,42%
4Xiamen Airlines6223587,15%
5Shenzhen Airlines4946255,69%
6Sichuan Airlines4783615,50%
7Hainan Airlines3659114,21%
8Shandong Airlines3649164,19%
9Spring Airlines3452403,97%
10Juneyao Air2203002,53%

We used ch-aviation fleets advanced and ch-aviation capacities data for this analysis.

Follow our blog and our LinkedIn page for the latest data extracts on #chaviationcovid19updates.

Italy remains the largest affected European country during the ongoing spread of the COVID-19 virus. Many airlines have announced cancellations or reduced frequencies throughout Italy. The largest airline in the market, Ryanair, is suspending all of its flights to and from Italy between March 13 and April 8, according to a statement the ultra-low-cost carrier issued to investors.

We analyzed the ch-aviation capacities module to understand what airlines are most exposed with Italy operations and which are the largest destination markets from Italy.

Based on ch-aviation capacities scheduled for the current week (March 9 to 15, 2020) we see 35.5% of capacity scheduled from Italian airports are for domestic flights.

The market leader by seats scheduled in Italy is Ryanair with more than 0.5 million seats scheduled to depart this week. The Irish airline takes almost one-third of the market capacity with flights from Italian airports. Ryanair is the second-largest carrier at Rome Fiumicino and Milan Malpensa, Italy’s two biggest airports, and it is the dominant airline at the country’s third-largest facility, controlling 88% of weekly seats at Milan Bergamo.

Airline Number of seats Share of seats, %
Ryanair 509.544 32,65%
Alitalia 277.018 17,75%
easyJet Europe 183.788 11,78%
Wizz Air 55.771 3,57%
Vueling Airlines 48.052 3,08%
easyJet 36.749 2,35%
British Airways 32.569 2,09%
Volotea 25.950 1,66%
Air France 25.538 1,64%
Lufthansa 25.108 1,61%

Four countries had more than 100,000 seats scheduled from Italian airports per week.

The leading destination markets are United Kingdom, followed by Spain, Germany and France.

Country Number of seats Share of seats, %
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (the) 153.074 15,22%
Spain 142.578 14,18%
Germany 108.322 10,77%
France 102.890 10,23%
Netherlands (the) 46.268 4,60%
Romania 35.232 3,50%
Russian Federation (the) 28.912 2,88%
Belgium 28.766 2,86%
Poland 26.328 2,62%
Portugal 24.176 2,40%

The two largest international airports with the highest capacity of flights to Italy are actually in Spain – Madrid Barajas and Barcelona El Prat.

Airport Number of seats Share of seats, %
Madrid Barajas (MAD) 50.663 5,04%
Barcelona El Prat (BCN) 44.991 4,47%
London Gatwick (LGW) 44.428 4,42%
Paris CDG (CDG) 43.178 4,29%
Amsterdam Schiphol (AMS) 40.111 3,99%
London Stansted (STN) 38.667 3,85%
London Heathrow (LHR) 25.293 2,52%
Munich (MUC) 24.096 2,40%
Paris Orly (ORY) 23.669 2,35%
Frankfurt Int’l (FRA) 22.760 2,26%

Data from the the ch-aviation capacities module

The United States will suspend entry for travellers coming from the Schengen Area, covering 26 European countries, effective on midnight, March 13, 2020, President Donald Trump announced in an Oval Office address.

“We will be suspending all travel from Europe to the United States for the next 30 days. The new rules will go into effect Friday at midnight. These restrictions will be adjusted subject to conditions on the ground,” Trump said.

According to a follow-up statement issued by the Department of Homeland Security, the presidential proclamation covers all foreign nationals who have been to any of the Schengen Area countries “at any point during the 14 days prior to their scheduled arrival to the United States.”

The Schengen Zone includes all European Union members except for the United Kingdom, Ireland, Romania, Bulgaria, Croatia, and Cyprus, as well as Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, and Liechtenstein, which are not EU members.

Read the full story in our news feed.

We have looked at the countries and airlines which will be most affected by the new limitations based on the ch-aviation capacities data as of this week (starting March 9, 2020).

There are 8 countries in the Schengen Zone which do not have any scheduled flights to the US this week. The list includes Czechia, Estonia, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Malta, Slovakia and Slovenia.

In total, there are 432 566 seats scheduled from March 9 to 15. 27% of these seats are scheduled from Germany.

Country Number of seats
Germany 119 231
France 83 621
Netherlands (the) 60 394
Spain 43 319
Switzerland 26 232
Italy 21 710
Portugal 16 714
Iceland 11 653
Belgium 11 435
Denmnark 10 005

The largest alliance affected by the grounding is Star Alliance with 193 454 seats scheduled between the Schengen Zone and the US currently. SkyTeam has 138 206 seats scheduled and oneworld has a relatively low impact with 49 806 seats scheduled (mainly because the largest European oneworld carrier British Airways is based in UK).

Airline Number of seats
Lufthansa 69 163
Delta Air Lines 67 781
United Airlines 57 265
Air France 38 279
American Airlines 30 199
KLM Royal Dutch Airlines 22 478
Norwegian 19 810
Swiss 18 390
SAS Scandinavian Airlines 16 599
Iberia 15 852
TAP Air Portugal 13 078
Icelandair 11 653
LOT Polish Airlines 7 632
Alitalia 7 004
Emirates 5 901

Data from the the ch-aviation capacities module


We are following 4,145 aircraft operated by 87 carriers in China in our ch-aviation fleets advanced database. In a picture of the coronavirus spread, our aircraft data team updates information every day about the grounded aircraft due to reduced operations by Chinese airlines.

We also follow 87 of Boeing 737MAX aircraft grounded in airports in China since March 2019.

As of February 12, 2020, we see 1215 aircraft operated by airlines from China, Hong Kong and Macao grounded (including passenger aircraft and cargo aircraft).

The following airlines have the most of their fleet grounded in China:

Operator Aircraft on Ground Total Aircraft % of Grounded
China Eastern Airlines 191 556 33,7%
China Southern Airlines 173 530 32,6%
Air China 119 428 27,8%
Hainan Airlines 100 227 44,1%
Sichuan Airlines 65 159 40,9%
Shenzhen Airlines 51 187 27,3%
Xiamen Airlines 50 167 29,9%
Tianjin Airlines 47 95 49,5%
Shanghai Airlines 35 105 33,3%
Capital Airlines 33 83 39,8%

The following airlines are exposed the most with these groundings, as these airlines have the largest share of their fleet grounded (all 50%+):

China Xinhua Airlines 2 2 100%
Henan Airlines 20 30 66,7%
China Grand Air 2 3 66,7%
Okay Airways 17 26 65,4%
GX Airlines 14 27 51,9%

The airports with the most of these aircraft parked are the following:

Beijing Capital 103
Guangzhou Baiyun International 79
Hangzhou Xiaoshan International 60
Xi’an Xianyang International 59
Urumqi Diwopu International 58
Chengdu Shuangliu International 54

We also see these are the types of the aircraft mostly affected by the groundings by Chinese airlines:

Aircraft Type Aircraft on Ground Total Aircraft % of Grounded
B737-800 325 1194 27,11%
A320-200 180 848 21,23%
A321-200 114 361 31,58%
A320-200N 70 196 35,71%
A330-300 62 199 31,16%
A319-100 47 173 27,17%