2020 airline passenger traffic lowest since 1984


Traffic on U.S. passenger airlines fell 60.1 percent in 2020 due to the lack of travel during the coronavirus pandemic, marking the lowest demand since 1984. 

The Transportation Department said on Tuesday that 368 million passengers flew on U.S. airlines in 2020, Reuters reported. In 1984, 351.6 million passengers flew on U.S. airlines.

In 2019, 922.6 million passengers flew on U.S. airlines.

Demand for air travel is down 60 percent through early this month as well, according to Reuters. 

International travel was devastated due to travel restrictions between countries, falling by 70.4 percent in 2020 compared to 2019. 

Federal aid for airlines is set to expire at the end of next month, and American Airlines and United Airlines say they plan to furlough a combined 27,000 workers at that point.

American Airlines, in a recent memo to employees, said that 2021 presents a similar situation with decreased revenue and travel. The airline industry is lobbying for extended relief in light of the lack of travel.

For the week starting Jan. 31, revenue from airline bookings was down 82 percent compared to the same week in 2019, according to data from the trade group Airlines for America.

Tags Airlines American Airlines Aviation Coronavirus Impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on aviation Transportation Department United Airlines

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