About 3.3 million airline seats could be permanently lost during the US coronavirus travel ban.
A report by ForwardKeys has suggested US carriers, such as Delta Air Lines and United Airlines, could both lose 400,000 seats after president Donald Trump banned foreign nationals for an initial 30 days.
It initially only applied to 26 countries in Europe’s Schengen area, but on 16 March the policy was extended to cover the UK and Ireland.
The ban is designed to curb the spread of Covid-19, which has killed almost 8,000 people worldwide.
Other impacted airlines include British Airways, American Airlines, Lufthansa, Virgin Atlantic, Air France, Aer Lingus, KLM and Norwegian Air.
ForwardKeys says the UK is set to be the worst affected, losing over a million seats – above 500,000 seats for Germany, 400,000 for France, 300,000 for the Netherlands, 200,000 for Spain, and 100,000 for both Italy and Switzerland.
In total, extending the ban to the UK and Ireland could endanger 1.3 million seats.
This is on top of the two million seats in jeopardy from the rest of the Schengen Area.
“Whilst a few flights are still operating, bringing permanent US residents and their immediate family back home, this is an unprecedented collapse in air travel,” said Olivier Ponti, vice-president of insights at ForwardKeys.
“In an incredibly short space of time, this ban has decimated the world’s busiest and most profitable segment of the aviation industry, transatlantic travel.”