Year in Aviation | 2020 in Review

2020 was not an easy year in aviation. Starting the year in mourning following the tragic UIA Flight 752, the industry went on to experience a drastic U-turn when the era of prosperity was replaced by times of crisis. And while many aviators might be joining those who call 2020 “the worst year ever”, it was not all doom & gloom in aviation. Not for everyone, at least.

Let’s take a look at 2020 in review.
The year in aviation ends on a note of shy and restrained positivity. The industry is just starting the COVID-19 vaccine distribution ‒ a task remarkably challenging for its sheer scope alone. On another hand, it is incredibly important for aviation itself as coronavirus vaccination is often seen as the most realistic condition for the world’s reopening and a key for aviation’s recovery. Before it was even created, COVID-19 vaccine already appeared more often than not in conversations about aviation’s recovery.

As events of 2020 unfolded, the news in the spotlight changed, yet some themes and topics consistently reappeared throughout the year. Flights transporting medical aid and PPE dominated both the skies and the spotlight; Air freight operations became the most lucrative operations in aviation amidst the cargo capacity crunch; domestic flights overtook international ones; wide-body aircraft were parked and retired.

Meanwhile, concerned about their survival, companies were trying to reduce and control their cash-burn. This often involved cutting operations and fleets, carrying out massive furloughs and layoffs of staff, and looking for alternative revenue sources. The latter effort ranged from governmental financial aid, sometimes accompanied by sustainability commitments, to attempts to think creatively and find revenue streams where others might see none, whether by offering themed joy flights or by offering airline food outside the cabin.

As aviation went from golden times to survival mode, previous concerns were replaced by new problems. If the phrase pilot shortage was still an industry-wide topic in the first few months, later on it gave way for new terms that found their way into aviators’ vocabularies.

The word cloud below shows some phrases that best describe what was going on in aviation in 2020.

The word cloud below shows some phrases that best describe the year in aviation. Check related articles by clicking on the word map phrases.
What one word describes 2020 the best for you?
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