Coronavirus: Airports around the world empty as travel industry suffers

‘Taiwan’s #TPE airport is dead, like, dead’ – passenger

Cathy Adams
Wednesday 04 March 2020 14:08
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With the coronavirus outbreak around the world showing no sign of slowing down, the travel industry has been one of the hardest affected.

Global airlines including British Airways, Cathay Pacific and United Airlines have slashed routes to destinations including northern Italy and South East Asia as they face a softening of demand due to the spread of coronavirus, or Covid-19.

As a result, airports around the world have emptied out as they deal with a dramatic drop in air traffic.

Passengers have taken to social media to share pictures of empty airports, particularly in Asia.

Hong Kong Airport, usually one of the busiest in the world, has cut hundreds of flights as it deals with a lack of passenger demand due to the coronavirus.

According to the aviation trade body Iata, the coronavirus will cause a drop in global demand for air travel this year, marking the first overall contraction since the financial crisis of 2008-2009, according to the aviation trade body.

A forecast from Iata predicts a 4.7 per cent contraction in global demand for 2020, which represents a $29.3bn (£22.6bn) slump in airline revenue.

Iata reports that many carriers are reporting a 50 per cent “no show” rate, as passengers decide not to travel in the wake of the virus.

The trade body is asking airports to relax the usual “use it or lose it” rules on take-off and landing slots.

So far, more than 3,000 have died and almost 100,000 have been infected with the flu-like virus, which originated in the city of Wuhan, China, in December.

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