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It’s with a huge sense of relief that I write this issue’s editorial, as a return to some kind of normality in the aviation sector finally looks like taking shape. Figures from IATA give reason for cautious optimism: total demand for air travel in March may have been down 67.2 per cent compared to March 2019, but this was a distinct improvement over the 74.9 per cent decline recorded in February.
The amelioration in performance was driven by gains in domestic markets, particularly China. Total domestic demand was down 32.3 per cent versus pre-crisis levels, but greatly improved over February, when domestic traffic was down 51.2 per cent versus the 2019 period.
In our Taking Flight feature on page 34, we examine what measures airlines and industry suppliers alike are taking to ensure that passengers can return to the skies with complete confidence. These include protective kits for crew and passengers; antimicrobial cleaning products; ultraviolet ...