European airlines: summer capacity ramp-up looks very speculative

Premium Analysis

For the first time during the coronavirus pandemic, projected European capacity derived from airline schedules three to four months into the future has been increased this week. This is in spite of Europe's continued underperformance against other regions on seat count compared with 2019 levels, its high COVID-19 case numbers, and its slow vaccination rollout (the UK excepted).

Europe's seat capacity is down by 70.6% from 2019 levels in the week of 5-Apr-2021 – unchanged from a week ago and still way behind other regions.

Versus capacity in 2019, Middle East capacity is down by 52.9%, Africa by 51.3%, Latin America by 45.2%, North America by 36.4%, and Asia Pacific by 29.7% (the first region to rise above the -30% threshold).

European capacity in Apr-2021 is projected to remain around -70%, but OAG schedules then ramp up to within 21% of 2019 for Jul-2021 and Aug-2021. Moreover, capacity for those two peak summer months is up by a few percentage points compared with schedules filed last week.

In the absence of any clarity over the lowering of barriers to international travel, and with the EU Digital Green Certificate still unproven, this looks very speculative.

Become a CAPA Member to access Analysis Reports

This CAPA Premium Analysis Report is 1,505 words.
Become a CAPA Member

Our Analysis Reports are only available to CAPA Members. CAPA Membership provides exclusive access to in-depth insights on the latest developments in the aviation and travel industry, developed by our team of dedicated analysts located in Europe, North America, Asia and Australia.

Each report offers a fresh perspective on the latest industry trends and is available online or via the CAPA mobile app, with customisable alerts to help you stay informed and identify new business opportunities.

CAPA Membership also provides access to our full suite of tools, including a tailored selection of more than 1,000 News Briefs every week and comprehensive data and analysis on thousands of companies around the world.