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European Flights Will Be 55% Lower Than In 2019

As Poly’s David Danto has said repeatedly on social media, the pandemic and lockdown is making us all ‘experts’ on things like #WorkFromHome (we use the word ‘expert’ here in the influencer sense of he / she who shouts the loudest / puts the most posts out) and the same is true I guess, of many of us interested in trade shows, events, retail, hospitality and of course (one of my favourite subjects), namely air travel.

[1]This arrived in our inbox on Monday where EUROCONTROL [1] has issued new Draft Traffic Scenarios. EUROCONTROL is the European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation, an international organisation working to achieve safe and seamless air traffic management across Europe.

They have revised downwards its Draft Traffic Scenarios up to February 2021 and under its new ‘Current Status Scenario’, the total number of flights expected in Europe is anticipated to be 55% lower than in 2019.

This is an amazing drop of six million fewer flights, which is actually a further one million reduction in European flights than previously anticipated.

Eamonn Brennan, Director General EUROCONTROL was quoted as saying “We’re going backwards now and it’s really worrying for the entire industry. There’s a lack of coordination between States on how to manage air travel despite good guidance from EASA and ECDC; there’s a lot of confusion and very little passenger confidence; and of course outbreaks of COVID-19 are picking up across Europe. Our new Current Status Scenario could improve if there was more coordination between States on how best to handle air travel through harmonised testing and common epidemiological assessment criteria. That would give more predictability for passengers, airports and airlines. At the same time, it could get even worse if States continue to impose blanket restrictions and quarantine measures – this approach is killing the travel and tourism industry. We welcome the European Commission proposals for harmonisation and encourage all parties to adopt them.”


None of this bodes well for any of us in 2021.

EUROCONTROL has as its primary objective to develop a seamless, pan-European air traffic management (ATM) system that fully copes with the growth in air traffic, while maintaining a high level of safety, reducing costs and respecting the environment.

EUROCONTROL has 41 Member States: Albania, Armenia, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands, North Macedonia, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. EUROCONTROL has Comprehensive Agreements with the Kingdom of Morocco and the State of Israel.