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CAPA Live: European aviation struggles to reverse slide in momentum

Premium Analysis

At CAPA Live on 14-Oct-2020 CAPA analysts presented an overview of the current situation and outlook for aviation in each of the major regions of the world.

For Europe, the challenge is how to reverse the slide in momentum since Aug-2020.

RPK growth in Europe 'recovered' to -73.0% year-on-year in Aug-2020, from -81.3% in Jul-2020 (and worse before that). However, Aug-2020 represented 'peak recovery' for seat capacity and traffic.

Moreover, the number of aircraft back in service in Europe has reached a plateau since mid Aug-2020. LCCs have returned a higher percentage of aircraft to service (74% versus 66% for all of Europe's airlines), but this is no longer climbing.

There are currently few signs in any data that Europe's aviation recovery will regain positive momentum as COVID-19 case numbers continue to increase and governments continue with fragmented quarantine requirements.

For Europe's biggest aviation market, the UK, CAPA projects seats at 35%-40% of 2019 levels through the coming winter – no higher than in early Oct-2020.

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