You may have heard the saying, “May you live in interesting times.” This phrase is usually thought of as a curse dressed up as a blessing. Well, times have certainly been made interesting by the appearance of COVID-19. Like you, we hope that vaccines and treatments will make times in 2021 much less “interesting” than 2020.
For general aviation, the “interesting times” of 2020 have actually turned out to be a blessing. Pilots on both sides of the Atlantic have reported general aviation flight activity has been robust, particularly in the flight school arena. In the U.S. 60% of flight schools report stronger activity than pre-COVID-19. AOPA reported in late 2020 that at the FAA’s top 77 airports general aviation operations showed an increase of 20% year over year. AOPA also reported that during 2020 there were more Cessna 172s in the sky most days than all other aircraft combined.
Plus, GA aircraft sales and prices are rising. The General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) reported that piston airplane deliveries for the first nine months of 2020 rose compared to 2019.
Airline travel took a gigantic hit, but Boeing’s 10 year forecast for commercial aviation jobs, adjusted downward for COVID-19, still predicts a need for 763,000 new pilots, 739,000 technicians and 903,000 cabin crew members. That number of future aviation career jobs certainly looks like a lot of opportunities.
We hope circumstances have allowed you to use your time in positive and productive ways, like going online to expand your aviation knowledge, enjoying the privacy of GA flying, and improving your skills.
So, while we have all been impacted by COVID-19, our wish is that you and your loved ones stay healthy, that COVID-19 soon becomes a thing of the past, and that you are blessed with opportunities to fly more and expand your aviation knowledge.
Hope to see you soon at the airport!
John & Martha