The coronavirus has already changed the world as we know it. It has provoked a change in consumer habits, and a fundamental shift in values which likely means that convincing people to travel again in a post-COVID-19 world will be more difficult than it seems. Passengers will be more concerned with the cleanliness of the aircraft, privacy, and seat density. That being said, airlines will have to adapt to survive the crisis that is here to stay.
Even with a gradual lifting of social distancing restrictions, and more lenient travel protocols, the industry will remain in a perilous state for a long time to come. Until a vaccine is found for the virus people may be very reluctant to begin flying again soon. Many airlines will shed assets to survive, other airlines will disappear entirely.
The current situation calls for renewed attention to alternative sources of revenue for airline companies. If passenger revenue will be insufficient for airlines to continue operations, then they must look into the new emerging trend which is air cargo. Cargo is a core source of revenue for passenger airlines, but it has not always accounted for a large percentage of airline revenue. However, the situation has changed dramatically. Now, the role of air cargo can be utilized as we see an increasing demand for it.
A few airlines have started placing their passenger aircraft back into service temporarily as quasi freighters. Some airlines have even removed passenger seats to make room for freight. All of a sudden, Cargo has changed from a revenue contributor to a fixed overhead, to the only source of revenue for many airlines. It is currently a critical area of resiliency for the global airline industry during these extremely challenging times.
Presently, air freight is being impacted by the rise of e-commerce and as long as e-commerce becomes a greater and greater proportion of retail sales, there will be high demand for air cargo. There’s also a rising demand for high-value cargo, such as pharmaceuticals, live animals, aerospace components, and auto parts. In short, airlines should look into the freight potential as a means of revenue now, and in the future.
The road to any airline career is not an easy one, let us all appreciate every crew member for their hard work and dedication that they give to the industry! To learn about Laminar Aviation and its programs and classes, visit https://laminaraviation.com.