1 min read.Updated: 13 Jan 2022, 04:05 PM ISTRhik Kundu
IATA has been arguing against the strict restrictions put in place by several governments to contain the spread of the virus
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NEW DELHI: The recent surge in Omicron-led covid infections have led to a fall in international ticket sales, which were showing signs of recovering in November, casting doubts over demand revival in the coming months, aviation industry body The International Air Transport Association (IATA) said in a statement.
Industry-wide available seat-kilometers (ASKs) fell 39.7% in November 2021 from November 2019, following a 40.8% decline in October, IATA said. “The industrywide revenue passenger-kilometres (RPKs) fell by 47.0% (during November 2021) versus November 2019, compared with a 48.9% contraction in October. Month-on-month growth eased from 7.9% to 1.7%."
ASKs is a measure of passenger carrying capacity of airlines, and RPK measures the passenger volume of an airline.
"Passenger numbers might remain resilient in December as people traveled to see their friends and relatives. However, the emergence of the Omicron variant has led to a fall in international ticket sales in recent weeks, which increased uncertainty around further substantial RPKs improvement in early-2022," IATA said in the statement.
"The new strain resulted in enhanced travel restrictions around the world just at the time when countries had started to relax travel measures and international travel was gaining momentum. However, the number of tickets purchased in December and early-January suggests no improvement in domestic travel and a deterioration in international travel at the start of 2022," it added.
Meanwhile, IATA has been arguing against the strict restrictions put in place by several governments to contain the spread of the virus.
“If the experience of the last 22 months has shown anything, it is that there is little to no correlation between the introduction of travel restrictions and preventing transmission of the virus across borders," said IATA’s Director General Willie Walsh.