US airlines are going through the same crisis as the rest of the airlines across the globe are experiencing. North American airlines have seen a decrease in the passenger numbers as compared to the first quarter of the last year and this trend is expected to remain for the whole year.
When fewer people are traveling, it means the revenue would be affected and one assumption is that, as compared to last year, the revenue would be less by $63 billion. Even though the reduction in revenue is huge, it’s still less than what IATA is expecting for other regions. The regions like Asia-Pacific, the Middle East, Africa, and Latin America will see even more decline in the air traffic.
A reason why the impact on the air traffic in North America is lower than other regions is that the US travel market is still operating. According to IATA figures, the USA market has the highest number of airline traffic as compared to any other region in 2019. According to data released by US trade group Airlines for America (A4A), USA international flights saw a decline of around 90% whereas the domestic flights were down by 63%. This data shows why the USA domestic market is still stronger than other domestic markets.
The data also tells that there was a decline in the demand for air travel, as the stay-home orders are imposed on almost 95% of the country. While the US airlines are struggling, the fact that the demand is relatively high in the domestic market presents hope for them.
Financial support has already been provided by the US government to the airlines. The Trump government paid $24 billion for wages and $23 billion for loans. Even though there are certain conditions attached, Steven Mnuchin said that 10 airlines are willing to participate in the program.
Such airlines include American Airlines, Alaska Airlines, Delta Air Lines, and JetBlue Airways. Southwest airlines is also looking for government help.
They are also in contact with other airlines to see if they would participate in the program or not.