A new survey by International Air Transport Association (IATA) shows that among all regions, more than half of the respondents expect Asia Pacific to recover 2019 levels of activity first.
This is followed by North America as in the previous January airline business confidence survey. On the other hand, Europe is forecast to return to 2019 levels of demand later than elsewhere.
However, respondents became more pessimistic lately about the timing of recovery and the restart in long-haul traffic. About 67 per cent of surveyed carriers expect the demand recovery to pre-crisis levels will take longer than two years
Only one fourth of respondents are now anticipating a recovery between 12 to 24 months.
The expectations regarding long haul recovery moved forward as well. Almost half of the respondents anticipate long haul traffic to restart in 2022 or later.
About 70 per cent of the respondents reported a reduction in their workforce in Q1 as the pandemic continues to affect airline operations. On the other hand, expectations for the future improved as only 15 per cent of respondents expect a further decrease in employment levels in the next 12 months.