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Emirates and Air France-KLM anticipate a rapid recovery

Emirates und Air France-KLM erwarten baldige Erholung  Auf ITB Berlin NOW setzen die Chefs Clark und Smith vor allem auf wohlhabende Reisende

At ITB Berlin NOW the CEOs Clark and Smith are focusing particularly on wealthy travellers

The CEOs of Emirates and Air France-KLM were optimistic that passenger numbers would soon return to normal around the globe. In interviews at the ITB Berlin NOW Convention they pinned their hopes above all on the wealthy long-haul travel market.

President of Emirates Sir Tim Clark was confident that, parallel with vaccinations becoming increasingly available, passenger numbers would recover by mid-2022. “I remain optimistic“, he said. He saw the first passengers boarding flights being those who paid for premium vacations. His company was already noticing substantial demand in that market. “Everyone wants to get out after all these months.“ However, passenger capacity would still be lower even in 2023. The Emirates CEO cautioned governments not to strategically plan for a long-term reduction in air traffic after the current lockdowns. That would have a significant impact on the global economy.

Clark said that the pandemic had by no means pushed sustainable travel off the agenda. He believed that there was a greater urgency now. As an example he noted efforts at airports to implement a total ban on fossil-fuel vehicles in areas outside runways.

Air France-KLM CEO Ben Smith was not quite so optimistic. Altogether, it would probably take three to four years to reach pre-pandemic figures again. His focus was also on holidaymakers being the first to get back on flights. “Many of those who were unable to visit their relatives at Christmas or Easter will want to do so as soon as possible.“ He himself was longing to see his relatives in Australia and would “surely be on the first plane to land there when borders opened again“.

Air France KLM: www.airfranceklm.com

Emirates: pr@emirates.com

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