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European airline schedules: disconnect from Russia and Ukraine reality

Premium Analysis

Data based on schedules filed by airlines is now showing a trace of the impact of Russia's invasion of Ukraine on European capacity, but only a small one. There is a slight decline in Europe's seat numbers as a percentage of 2019 levels, after five weeks of improvement.

Europe's seat capacity is down by 28.4% versus 2019 capacity in the week of 7-Mar-2022, which is just 0.6ppts worse than last week (week of 28-Feb-2022).

Europe remains fifth in the regional ranking, above Asia Pacific, where capacity is down by 30.7%. Middle East capacity is down by 24.4%, Africa by 17.1%, North America by 14.3%, and Latin America by 8.4% (the closest to 2019 levels for any region since before the coronavirus pandemic).

Drilling down into data for Europe, it is clear that Russia's schedules do not reflect the suspension of international flights, either in current week data or in projections into the summer. Schedules for Ukraine still show frequencies at 22% of 2019 levels this week – even while EUROCONTROL records no flights.

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