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Which U.S. States are Experiencing the Greatest Impact on Air Service due to COVID-19?

Air demand drops

A new analysis by Airlines for America (A4A) – the industry trade group representing major U.S. carriers – shows which states are experiencing the greatest impact on air service and air-travel demand amid the COVID-19 health crisis.

According A4A analysis of published schedules, New York has been the hardest hit state in the country, having experienced the largest decrease in scheduled departures from July 2019 to July 2020. New York experienced a 70% decline in scheduled passenger flights. New Jersey is the second-most impacted state, experiencing a 67% decline in scheduled passenger flights.

Montana has been impacted the least, with 25% fewer flights offered in July 2020 compared to July 2019.

The national average is 50%.

As part of the analysis, A4A also pointed out that the number of air travelers being screened by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has plummeted nationally. The 10 states and jurisdictions with the largest year-over-year declines in TSA checkpoint volume were:

1. New York (-86%)
2. Hawaii (-85%)
3. Washington, D.C. (-83%)
4. Vermont (-83%)
5. Massachusetts (-82%)
6. New Jersey (-81%)
7. Rhode Island (-79%)
8. California (-79%)
9. New Mexico (-78%)
10. Connecticut (-75%)

Additional data is available here.

Prior to the ongoing global health crisis, U.S. airlines were transporting a record 2.5 million passengers and 58,000 tons of cargo each day. As travel restrictions and stay-at-home orders were implemented, demand for air travel declined sharply. The lowest point was reported in April when passenger volumes were down 96% to a level not seen since before the dawn of the jet age (in the 1950s).

A4A further noted that the industry has a long recovery ahead. Air travel took three years to recover from 9/11 and more than seven years to recover from the Global Financial Crisis in 2008.

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