Over 50% of passengers want to wait for at least 6 months before they travel by air again: IATA survey
Mumbai: International Air Transport Association (IATA), a trade association of the world’s airlines since 1945, had conducted a survey in 11 countries, including India and the United States of America (USA), and announced its results at a webinar on Thursday.
The results are far from encouraging, as the survey found that confidence for air travel among passengers have hit rock bottom by early June because of the raging coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic compared with the ground realities in mid-March, when the outbreak was still at a nascent stage.
The outcomes are based on two rounds of surveys conducted with 4,700 respondents in mid-March and early June.
“Over 50% of the passengers said they would travel by air after at least six months,” said Amitabh Khosla, director, India, IATA, at the webinar titled, “Restoring confidence in air travel” that was organised by US-India aviation cooperation programme.
“There is a major problem in gaining passengers’ confidence at the moment,” he added.
The findings showed that in mid-March 60% of the respondents had said they would return to the air travel within a couple of months, despite the pandemic.
But by early-June, the cautious optimism has changed, as 45% still held that view.
While 18% of the respondents in mid-March had booked their tickets three days in advance, but 41% did so by early June amid the easing of nationwide lockdown restrictions, which were enforced from March 25 to contain the spread of the Covid-19 outbreak.
An overwhelming 83% of the respondents said they wouldn’t travel by air if it involves a mandatory 14-day quarantine period.
“There is a need for better travel insurance in a bid to regain passengers’ confidence,” Khosla added.