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Asia Pacific Business Jet Flight Activity – Asian Sky Quarterly 2020 Q3

Asia Pacific Business Jet Flight Activity – Asian Sky Quarterly 2020 Q3

With the third quarter of 2020 just concluding in August, the total number of business aviation flights departing from the Asia-Pacific region since January was 38,698; declining by 25%, compared with the same period in 2019. With the Covid-19 pandemic worsening globally in Q2, there was a dip in activity coinciding with a series of travel quarantines. By the end of Q2, business aviation flight activity recovered with flights in APAC increasing each month since Q2: from 9,919 in July to 11,267 in August.

The Covid-19 situation in Mainland China improved during Q2, which led to Mainland China’s position as the top business aviation market in APAC from January to August.

Over the past eight months, the proportion of domestic flights was higher than international flights. APAC countries have, for the most part, opened up their economies, and consequently, tourism has seen a boost. Short-range flights within 2 hours now make up the majority of the business a viation activity, accounting for 58%.

Top Aviation Hubs’ Performances

There were a total of 6,684 business jet departures in Greater China until the end of August 2020, falling 32% compared with the same period of 2019.

During these eight months, 4,401 flights departed from Mainland China in total. Flights departing from Hong Kong fell 15%, flights from Taiwan fell by 48%, and flights from Macau shrank significantly by 68%.

Flights utilizing ultra-long-range jets saw a significant decline during this period, falling more than 70%, however, the utilization of largecabin jets only declined by 14%. This is attributed to the role of medical
and cargo flights in the time of Covid-19. In the super-light jet category, the number of flights was up 45%, with the use of the Cessna-Citation Excel/XLS models contributing to the increase.

2020 Jan-Aug Departure by City

During the Covid-19 period, the key transport hubs in Mainland China – Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangzhou – saw a substantial drop in the first four months. May saw the overall market edge further towards recovery.

Since the outbreak of the third wave of Covid-19 in Hong Kong in mid-July, a number of social distancing rules were put in place by the government to prevent the spread of the virus. Flight activity in July saw
a sudden drop, falling by 33% YoY.

Japan has also been seriously affected by the pandemic. The total number of flights departing from Tokyo during these eight months was 825, falling by 42%. Coronavirus cases in Japan started to surge again in June and July. As of August 18th, there were 243 severe cases, a threefold increase compared to the beginning of the month. Departures from Singapore were down 48%, compared to the same period in 2019.

2020 Jan-Aug Asia Pacific Business Jet Flight Activities

In terms of business jet activities by OEM: Bombardier and Gulfstream still dominate the business aviation market, with a total of 21,126 flights.

Activity in the ultra-long-range and large-cabin categories account for 66% of the regional business jet movements. However, the mid-size and super light-size categories showed strong growth.

Hong Kong became the second top aviation hub in the Asia-Pacific region throughout this eight month period, with 1,290 flights arriving into Hong Kong.