If you think the coronavirus has been rough on you – well, it has been brutal on Piedmont Triad International Airport (PTIA), which went from a vibrant air travel hub gaining in popularity early in the year to a place where, one day a few months ago, the number of employees working at the airport outnumbered the number of passengers using it.
This week PTIA, as is its practice every month at this time, released its passenger stats for the previous month – and they weren’t pretty. The stats released in late August reflect the travel in and out of the airport in July and the new report states that, last month, passenger traffic was down 75 percent over passenger traffic in July 2019. That drop meant that, year to date, the number of people flying in and out of PTIA was down 61 percent compared to the first seven months of 2019.
The vast majority of the flyers using the airport this year did so in the early part of the year before the COVID-19 pandemic shut society down and made people especially fearful of getting onto a plane – where passengers often sit for long periods close to one another and where the air is being recycled into the cabin.
PTIA has also felt a blow from the virus in its cargo numbers. However, that business hasn’t been hit as hard since people still need to continue to eat food and use products – even if they’re buying those products online instead of at a brick and mortar stores.
For July 2020, cargo flights at PTIA were down 31 percent over July 2019, and, year to date, down 28 percent over the first seven months of 2019.