Friday, 11 September 2020

The latest stats from OAG

The OAG has released its latest stats regarding airline frequency and capacity statistics showing that global capacity in September is expected to be -49% lower than it was in the same month last year.  OAG says global capacity has stalled at this level, and given the ongoing reductions in capacity week on week, the total picture for September is likely to be lower still by the end of the month.

Carriers globally have reduced capacity by 11% on last month. There are pockets of growth versus last month in Africa, Central Asia and Latin America, but this growth is from a very low basis as some of these markets have been slowest to kick start recovery from very low levels. South Africa for example will see 8% more seats this month than last, but remains 80% below last year.

Several parts of Asia are seeing capacity pullback this month compared to last month with 11.3m fewer seats in September than August. North-East Asia is boosted by the recovery of China’s domestic market – at least in terms of capacity - in September where there are expected to be 8% more seats than September 2019. Only China and the Russian Federation have capacity above last year’s levels.

In Europe, carriers are cutting capacity back on last month, as ongoing restrictions and quarantines occur across the region. Western Europe is now back to nearly 60% below last September, with 16% reduction on last month. The Caribbean has also seen capacity-cut back this month with carriers reducing seats by 29% on last month, as demand is impacted by ongoing restrictions on international travel. 

This month sees the US carriers pulling back on flights – Southwest – who were closest to last year’s level last month, have withdrawn 25% of the seats scheduled in August. JetBlue have also pared back flights with 20% fewer this month than last month. Of the US carriers in the Top 20, they remain furthest behind their 2019 position with 71% less flights.

The LATAM group are adding back flights, as seen in the regional chart with 40% more seats than last month. In absolute terms, the LATAM increase equates to just over 3,000 flights and they remain 74% down on September 2019.

Two of Europe’s biggest network carriers, Air France and SAS are both anticipating an increase in flights this month, with an increase of 15% and 22% respectively on last month. Much of the Air France increase is on domestic routes, although there is some additional frequency to Germany, the Netherlands and Switzerland. For SAS there are increases in frequency within Norway and Sweden, with some additional increases between the Scandinavian countries.
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