According to data released by aviation analytics firm Cirium, there were more departures from the UK on Christmas Day 2022 than pre-pandemic. This comes as a surprise, as the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly impacted the travel industry, leading to a decline in the number of flights being operated.
The data shows that during the festive period of 21 December to 4 January, there were 28,508 flights that departed from the UK. This represents a 49% increase compared to the same period in 2021, indicating that people are feeling more confident about travelling during the holiday season.
However, it is important to note that the number of flights operated from the UK during this period remains 22% down on pre-pandemic levels. In comparison to the same period in 2019, there were over 8,000 fewer departures recorded. This suggests that while there has been a slight increase in the number of flights being operated, the travel industry is still recovering from the impact of the pandemic.
One finding in the data is that there were 6% more flights departing the UK on Christmas Day 2022 than pre-pandemic. This indicates that travelling on the big day has become more popular, with 709 flights departing from UK airports on 25 December 2022, compared to only 668 on 25 December 2019.
Overall, the data from Cirium reveals that the travel industry is slowly starting to recover from the pandemic, with an increase in the number of flights being operated during the festive period. However, it is clear that the industry is not yet back to pre-pandemic levels, and it will likely take some time before it fully recovers.