To prevent the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, countries around the world have taken a variety of restrictive measures since the beginning of 2020. The air transport industry was immediately affected by these measures.
The first impact was visible in March 2020, with a 44% decrease in the total number of commercial flights (passengers, freight and mail) in the EU compared with the same month in 2019. With COVID-19 restrictions in full effect and changes in travel preferences, the most substantial falls in the number of commercial flights were recorded in April (-91% compared with the same month in 2019), May (-90%) and June (-84%).
During the peak summer months, there was only a partial recovery, with falls of 64% in July and 53% in August, with further decreases observed in September (-59%) and October (-62%).
The largest decreases in the number of commercial flights were recorded in major European air transport hubs: Frankfurt/Main (-251 900 commercial flights, -58%), Paris/Charles de Gaulle (-232 200, -55%), Amsterdam/Schiphol (-225 700, -53%), München (-218 300, -63%) and Madrid/Barajas (-212 800, -60%).