Business jet owners driving year on year growth in US and Europe
23/6/2022 – WINGX’s weekly Business Aviation Bulletin.
As we come into full summer in the major business aviation markets in the northern hemisphere, demand for business jet travel is unprecedented but growth in operated flights is likely to be capped by limits on operational feasibility and charter fleets, especially as owners start to use their aircraft more regularly.
Twenty days into the month of June 2022, global business aviation demand is on target to be the busiest June on record for flight activity. Combined business jet and turboprop sectors are 10% higher than comparable 2021, 16% higher than comparable 2019. Dedicated cargo operations are slowing slightly, sectors down 5% compared to last year, however, up 2% compared to 2019. Reflecting widely reported cancellations and disruption, scheduled airline sectors are flying 25% less than in 2019, although this activity is up by 28% Year on Year.
Chart 1: Business jet activity (sectors flown) by global flight sector in June 2022
North America accounts for 74% of global business jet and turboprop activity so far this month. Focusing on bizjets alone, sectors in the region this month are up 8% compared to last year, 19% higher than 2019. In week 24, from 13th to 19th June, business jet traffic in North America was up 7% compared to 2021, almost equal to week 23. Bizjets in the United States are flying 7% more than last year this month, 24% more than three years ago. Despite this, in week 24 bizjets flew 1% fewer sectors than in week 23. In the last 4 weeks flights are up 8% compared to 2021. Part 135 and 91K activity slowed in week 24 down 4% compared to the same week last year.
Domestic bizjet travel in the US is still outpacing the recovery from pre-covid in international sectors. So far this month the busiest international connection from the US is with Canada. Despite these connections being down 20% compared to June 2019, there has been triple digit growth compared to 2020 and 2021. Teterboro – Lester B. Pearson is the busiest airport pair, triple digit growth compared to last year, but still down 7% below comparable to 2019. The most popular Caribbean destinations have seen some slowdown compared to last year. The first summer of unlocked transatlantic travel is evidently seen substantial growth in business jet connections with Europe.
Chart 2 – Top bizjet country flows from United States, June 2022
In Europe, demand for business jet travel continues to eclipse 2019 trends and is so far well ahead of the strong rebound last summer. So far in June, business jet sectors are up by 25% compared to June 2021, keeping up with the 27% year on year growth trend in the last 4 weeks. Private and Corporate flight departments have seen the biggest rebound this month compared to last year, flights up 66% as individuals and executives get back in their planes. Paris Le Bourget remains the busiest bizjet airport so far this month, sectors are 75% above last year and 24% above 2019. Getaway resorts are seeing even bigger gains: business jet arrivals into Sevilla, Menorca and Samedan have more than doubled compared to June 2019.
The Art Basel festival in Basel, Switzerland is the biggest pull for business jet visitors in Europe this month. During the Monday – Sunday period of the event, the busiest origin points were Zurich, Linate and Le Bourget. Although daily arrivals into Basel were up by more than five times the normal, there was only 6% growth in landings compared the event back in 2019, some way behind the market trend. The other calendar event, the 24-hour motorcar race on 11th and 12th June, saw 30% fewer bizjet arrivals at local airports compared to three years ago.
Chart 3 – Bizjet arrivals into LFSB airport during Art Basel, 1st – 20th June
Rest of World
Business jet activity has slowed during the month of June in Asia, flights in week 24 5% fewer than in week 23. All the same, the last 4 weeks´ activity is well up on last year, a 21% increase in terms of sectors flown. Within Asia, 50% drop in China´s year on year business jet activity contrasts with triple-digit growth in flights in Singapore and Malaysia. Business jet activity in the Middle East keeps on rising, sectors up 38% compared to three years ago, 15% up compared to last year. Not everywhere is booming; arrivals into the United Arab Emirates have slid back 2% compared to last year. Asia is more variable this month. The bizjet market in China is almost half of last June, whilst Singapore and Malaysia are seeing triple digit growth.
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