The air travel industry is showing a tiny sign of life after seeing a record-low number of travelers in the past month due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Although the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the United States has reached nearly 1 million, many states, including Georgia and California, have begun lifting restrictions, leading residents to venture out and begin traveling again, even by air.
The TSA reported in its public logs an uptick in passengers in the last several days, with Sunday seeing the highest numbers of airport screenings since April 3.
On Thursday, there were 111,627 travelers screened, increasing on Friday to 123,464 travelers. By Sunday, the number reached 128,875 passengers.
That number is still a tiny fraction of a typical pre-pandemic day for the agency.
Typically, the TSA may scan over 2 million travelers per day. Back on March 1, prior to the U.S. beginning shelter-in-place orders, they reported nearly 2.3 million passengers flying that day.
By April 3, there were 129,763 reported travelers. The numbers began to decline over the next several weeks due to the coronavirus continuing to spread at mass numbers across the country.
Sydney-based CAPA Centre for Aviation predicted last month that many airlines will have a hard time bouncing back financially as they dip into their financial reserves amid the global outbreak.
“Emerging from the crisis will be like entering a brutal battlefield, littered with casualties,” CAPA said, warning that, “coordinated government and industry action is needed — now — if catastrophe is to be avoided.”
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