US Flight Record Shattered Amid Pandemic

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(ReliableNews.org) – US air travel is on the rise as the summer break draws to a close. Understandably, the industry suffered immense losses in the last 18 months due to the COVID-19 pandemic. But, things appear to be on the upswing for airline companies, at least for now.

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) reported that air travel hit a post-pandemic high on Sunday, July 1. Approximately 2,238,462 travelers passed through airport checkpoints compared to the 799,861 people who flew the same day in 2020. However, 2021’s figures remain lower than 2019, which saw 2,688,640 passengers.

Air travel has increased so much the last few weeks the airline industry is having difficulty meeting the increased demand. Airline companies laid off thousands of workers during the pandemic and have yet to increase the level to pre-pandemic figures despite receiving a massive bailout of $54 billion in taxpayer funds to prevent layoffs.

Aside from staffing issues, the rising number of infections from the COVID-19 Delta variant could reduce the level of air travel in the near future.

On August 2, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported 78,806 new cases and a 7-day moving average of 84,389. The daily infection rate has dropped from the recent high point of 105,347 hit on July 30. But, the 7-day moving average remains substantially higher than the July 30 rate of 73,080.

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