The trend in business aircraft activity continues to soften compared to 2022. The latest data prepared by specialist analyst WingX, covering the period to 5 March shows overall traffic 6% down on the comparable period last year. It comes in the wake of the Super Bowl held on 12 February in Glendale, Arizona, which saw a 25% fall in bizjet traffic compared to 2022 in Los Angeles. But overall traffic remains well ahead of pre-pandemic 2019 tallies – 16% higher over the 1 January to 5 March perioded.
Drilling down by region, overall North American traffic in February was 12% higher than 2019 but 6% lower than 2022. There was also an interesting divergence between domestic and international US traffic. Domestic bizjet flights in February were 7% lower than last year, but 16% higher than pre-pandemic 2019. In contrast, international bizjet sectors to and from the US were 5% higher than 2022 and 14% greater than 2019.
Traffic levels in Europe have continued to slide compared to last year, with February figures 10% lower than the same period in 2022. It makes an interesting comparison with scheduled airline traffic in February, which was 25% higher than a year ago but 22% lower than 2019. If the Russian market is excluded from the data, there were 7% fewer European bizjet sectors in February 2023 than in February 2022 – but that figure remains 9% higher than 2019.