Figures show Swiss airlines and airports will take years to recover from COVID
Due to the current adverse restrictions on travel throughout the world, airports in Switzerland have been struggling to stay afloat. Statements from Canton Zurich and Zurich Airport have described a significant drop in passenger numbers and predict the industry will only fully recover by 2025.
Quarantine over Omicron COVID variant hit airports hard
In a press conference, CEO of Flughafen Zürich AG, Stephan Widrig, said the airport had had an especially difficult two years. He noted that "In 2021 we had two thirds fewer passengers than in 2019," adding that he understood why stricter quarantine measures were announced but now assumes “air traffic will not recover until 2025.”
The situation remains a challenge for national airline SWISS as well. CEO Dieter Vranckx said, “A lot has changed, especially in the last few weeks.” He criticised the enthusiasm to close borders and impose quarantine in Switzerland and assured customers that SWISS will still fly to South Africa.
Swiss airports and airlines recovered slightly in 2021
Uncertainty around travel restrictions is the main issue for aviation at the moment, according to government councillor for Canton Zurich, Carmen Walker Späh. “It is worrying that the federal government ordered quarantine for some countries" Späh said. "If this returns, and people on holidays have to be quarantined for ten days when they arrive, then nobody will come.”
The amount of aviation traffic has recovered slightly compared with last year, but is still far behind numbers seen in 2019. Späh noted that both the aviation and tourism industries still face great challenges in the years ahead.