February 6 2023  |  Aviation Trends

IATA announces continued air travel recovery

By PAX Magazine Staff

The airline industry is looking up as recovery continues to be boosted, according to IATA

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced today that recovery in air travel continued in December 2022 and for the full year.

Total traffic in 2022 (measured in revenue passenger kilometres or RPKs) rose 64.4 percent compared to 2021 while globally, full-year 2022 traffic was at 68.5 percent of pre-pandemic (2019) levels. December 2022 total traffic rose 39.7 percent compared to December 2021 and reached 76.9 percent of the December 2019 level.

International traffic in 2022 climbed a significant 152.7 percent in contrast with 2021 and reached 62.2 percent of 2019 levels. In comparison, domestic traffic for 2022 rose 10.9 percent versus the prior year, with 2022 domestic traffic being at 79.6 percent of the full 2019 year level.

“The industry left 2022 in far stronger shape than it entered, as most governments lifted COVID-19 travel restrictions during the year and people took advantage of the restoration of their freedom to travel. This momentum is expected to continue in the New Year, despite some governments’ over-reactions to China’s re-opening,” said Willie Walsh, the Director General of IATA.

International passenger markets also saw a successful recovery. Asia-Pacific airlines posted a 363.3 percent rise in full-year international 2022 traffic compared to 2021, maintaining the strongest year-over-year rate among the regions.

European carriers’ full-year traffic climbed 132.2 percent versus 2021 and Middle Eastern airlines saw a 157.4 percent traffic rise in 2022 compared to 2021.

North American carriers reported a 130.2 percent annual traffic rise in 2022 versus the previous year. Latin American airlines posted a 119.2 percent traffic rise in 2022 over the full year 2021. African airlines’ annual traffic rose 89.2 percent in 2022 versus the prior year.

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