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Business Air News Bulletin
Business Air News Bulletin
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Annual traffic dips slightly, but up on 2019
Business jet activity in 2023 is stabilising at a little over six per cent decline on 2022 says WingX. The UEFA Champions League final drew in significant traffic for the European market.

In the opening 11 days of June, business jet and turboprop activity was six per cent below the same 11 days in June 2022, but still 17per cent ahead of pre-pandemic June 2019, according to WingX's weekly Global Market Tracker. Specifically, week 23 was seven per cent down on 2022, up 19 per cent on 2019. In contrast, scheduled airline sectors have started this month nine per cent ahead of June last year but still 14 per cent below June 2019. Focussing on just the top five airlines, namely Southwest, American Airlines, Delta Airlines, Ryanair and United Airlines, commercial airline activity this month is 12 per cent ahead of last year and eight per cent ahead of 2019. Dedicated freighter activity has dropped 12 per cent at the start of this month compared to last year but remains four per cent ahead of 2019.

In week 23, North American business jet sectors grew four per cent compared to the previous week but were eight per cent below the same dates in 2022. So far this year, business jet activity in North America is 18 per cent up on 2019, and seven per cent down on last year. Activity in the Caribbean this month is mixed, with departures from the Bahamas on a par with last year, Sint Marten 12 per cent ahead of last year and double digit declines noticeable across Jamaica and Cayman Islands.

In the US, Teterboro is the busiest business jet departure point this month, although activity is five per cent behind June last year but three per cent ahead of 2019. Dallas Love Field, the second busiest departure point this month, is seeing seven per cent less demand than last year and 23 per cent growth compared to 2019. Third ranked Washington Dulles is the only major business jet airport to see growth compared to last year, with departures one per cent ahead of last year.

60 per cent of flights in the region this month have been under 90 minutes in length; flights of this duration are six per cent below last year and 16 per cent ahead of 2019. Short haul flights of between one and a half to three hours are the furthest ahead of June 2019, with departures up 31 per cent, although down nine per cent compared to last year. Just 35 of business jet flights this month have been 12 hours or more, which is eight per cent below last year and 17 per cent ahead of 2019.

In week 23, European business jet activity grew four per cent compared to the previous week, although it remains down eight per cent compared to the same dates in 2022. Year to date, business jet activity is up six per cent compared to 2019.

France is the busiest business jet market in Europe this month, with just over 3,600 departures, 10 per cent below June last year, although four per cent ahead of 2019. Most major European countries are experiencing a decline in departures compared to last year, notably the UK, Germany and Switzerland experiencing double digit declines compared to last year.

Paris Le Bourget is the busiest business jet airport in Europe so far this month; departures are down 13 per cent compared to last June but 10 per cent ahead of 2019. Nice, the second busiest airport in the region has seen activity drop 10 per cent compared to last June, although traffic remains 13 per cent ahead of 2019. London Luton and Farnborough are two business jet hotspots seeing three per cent declines compared to June four years ago, while Madrid Barajas is down 32 per cent compared to June 2019.

Istanbul airports (LTFM and LTBA) have started the month with very strong activity trends, reflecting the city ́s hosting of the UEFA Champions League final on 10 June. During the event weekend the average daily business jet arrivals were up 226 per cent compared to the previous 28 days, showing a sharper increase from normal activity than for last year at Le Bourget.

Outside of North America and Europe, business jet activity is six per cent ahead of last June and 83 per cent ahead of 2019. 17 per cent of all departures are from Brazil; activity from this country is six per cent ahead of June last year and shows triple digit growth compared to 2019. Australia and India are seeing declines compared to last year of five per cent and eight per cent respectively, although both remain well ahead of 2019. China has started June 31 per cent ahead of last year, although almost a third down compared to 2019. In week 23, business jet activity in the Middle East grew 14 per cent compared to the previous week and is 13 per cent ahead of the same dates in 2022.

WingX managing director Richard Koe comments: “Business jet activity in 2023 is stabilising at a little over six per cent decline compared to last year, and between 15 per cent and 20 per cent up on 2019 for the year to date. Flight demand in Europe is flagging, although the UEFA Champions League final drew in significant traffic. The US market remains buoyant, with Florida and Texas the busiest.”

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