WingX: U.S. Charter Activity On the Decline

 - July 21, 2022, 10:21 AM

Month-to-date worldwide business aircraft activity saw a 13 percent improvement from pre-pandemic 2019, but logged a 0.4 percent decline from the same period last year, according to aviation industry data tracker WingX Advance. The Hamburg, Germany-based company noted that worldwide business jet activity was up 7 percent last week compared to the previous week, and 1 percent more than the same week in 2021.

In the North American market, business aircraft flew 5 percent fewer sectors so far this month compared to last July, but is up 6 percent versus July 2019. The U.S. business jet market is still flying above 2019 levels, though Part 135 and 91K activity was off 7 percent from the same period last year, continuing a trend over the past month.

According to WingX statistics, the larger and smaller cabin private jets are flying more than ever, but the growth has come at the expense of the midsize cabin segment. Private flight department flight hour activity indicates owners flying more than ever, and corporate flight departments this month have registered a little more activity than in July 2019. While the Gulfstream GV/500/550 fleet is seeing record utilization, other workhorse aircraft types such as the G400/450, Cessna Citation X, Bombardier Challenger 300, and Embraer Phenom 300 are all considerably off their usage levels from last July.

Europe is currently seeing peak business jet demand with the start of the summer holidays. Overall, the region has seen 13 percent more flights year-over-year thus far this month. That activity is 23 percent higher than in July 2019.

“The less-than-rosy economic outlook is clearly starting to erode the previously unstinting growth in business jet demand in the key U.S. market,” said Wing X managing director Richard Koe, adding that Texas, California, and Florida are all seeing sizeable year-on-year declines in charter activity. “Europe is behind the U.S. curve on the Covid rebound and also in peak summer season, so we’ll probably not see that decline until September.”