From the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic the world’s three largest aviation markets, China, the USA, and Europe have taken contrasting approaches and begun recoveries at different rates, each with different levels of success. The rest of the world has fallen somewhere in between. The levels of risk tolerance and consequent paths to recovery in all three markets have varied widely, but although the industry desperately wants to add capacity, sustainable growth on a secure foundation will be needed.
Despite the turmoil that the pandemic has created, there are now some green shoots appearing, some even as early as 2Q2020. During 2020 and into 2021 some countries and regions leveraged different strategies to begin slow recoveries back to the capacity levels that were seen in 2019; however, others were far less sustained, and led to setbacks and continued suppression of capacity.
Internationally, while a standardisation of approach is now badly needed to allow market reopening, that will not occur until the pandemic is much better controlled and vaccinations are vastly more widely distributed.
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