Business aviation activity has slowed to a trickle as Europe has become the epicentre of the coronavirus pandemic. Flights during this past weekend were down more than 70%. Just under 500 flights were operated on Sunday 22nd March, compared to more than 1,500 in an average Sunday in March 2019.
It appears that the surge in business aviation demand in some sectors last week has come to an abrupt end, reflecting the completion of repatriation and rescue flights, and the onset of a near-uniform lock down enacted by European governments, which has frozen travel demand.
Business aviation flights are now down by 40% when compared to the first 3 weeks of March last year. Network airline traffic has fallen by even more, which suggests that business aviation may continue to offer a critical transportation of last resort during the lock down.
This emergency role for business aviation is indicative in the growth of ambulance flights, doubled so far this year. Two aircraft types stand out with increased activity: the PC-24 and the Cirrus SR-50. As and when lock down measures get relaxed and travel demand re-emerges, operators of similar light aircraft fleets may be in the best position to respond.
WINGX Daily TRACKER
The WINGX Daily TRACKER provides you with a daily-updated dashboard on all business aviation flights operated globally.