It’s really difficult to evaluate how much the COVID-19 pandemic has affected the aviation industry. In the year, this industry’s total revenue was $328 billion, which was nearly only 40% of the revenue of the previous year.
It is also predicted that the airline industry will not be able to get its expected income before the year 2024. Thus, the airline operations are still struggling financially.
Along with the financial struggles, there are several other effects of the COVID-19 pandemic that have greatly changed the rules and working procedures of the aviation industry.
Some of those new rules are obvious and important, such as safety and hygiene-related measures. Moreover, the digitization system is becoming popular in the traveling industry. Also, the vaccine certificates and the test results of COVID-19 are becoming mandatory.
Thus, the importance of digitalization and hygienic practices are becoming more dominant in the sectors related to airline operations. The fact that the aviation industry has faced serious loss due to the lockdown and has been unable to recover from it till now can’t be denied.
You can say that the year of the pandemic has become the worst year in the history of the aviation industry.
How was the aviation sector affected by COVID-19 both in India and internationally?
According to the report of The Airline Group of the International Federation of Operation Research, the airline industry offered jobs to more than 80 million people around the world. This sector also contributed to the gross domestic product by offering near about 8%. Also, nearly 60% of the tourists travel by flight.
However, due to the pandemic, in April of the year 2020, two-third of the world’s aircraft were dismissed. Also, about 90% of the operations did not take place. Moreover, a report provided by IATA or the International Air Transport Association showed that we would get only 40% of the total business of the previous year.
In India, the two most famous and largest airline companies incurred great losses, SpiceJet and IndiGo. Due to these losses; many employees of the aviation industry were laid off. Some of their salaries have been deducted, or some were forced to take leaves.
Not only that but the government was also forced to extend the last date of submitting the bids for Air India several times in the year. In addition to this, the countries like Australia, Singapore, United Arab Emirates, and the U.K have imposed restrictions on passengers from India.
What can be done for recovery?
Now, both the airline staff and travelers are hoping to resume their travels and are supporting the vaccination campaigns and promoting healthy and hygienic practices.
However, the operating costs of the aviation industry have increased due to the extra safety and health-related requirements. The expenses increased for the tasks like viral tests, disinfection, etc. This is expected to continue till the COVID-19 completely wipes out.
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What is the future?
Though several countries and their aviation industries are still struggling, they are expected to cope up with that easily due to the strong vaccination drive. Recently some restrictions on foreign passengers have also been wiped out.
Though this can give us a ray of hope, you still have to wait for some time to enjoy the normal working procedure of the aviation industry.
Therefore, the airline operations will become normal and operate the way they once used to.