Audley Deidrick, president and CEO of the Airports Authority of Jamaica (AAJ), says that based on international and local projections, it could take up to five years for Jamaica to see airline passenger traffic levels returning to pre-COVID numbers.
Before COVID-19 brought passenger traffic to a halt locally in March with the closure of the country’s borders, Jamaica was receiving between 400,000 and 500,000 airline passengers monthly to the island.
The AAJ boss told The Gleaner yesterday that the major aviation bodies globally such as the Airports Council International and the International Air Transport Association have forecast recovery in the order of four to five years. He said the AAJ was working with a similar timeline to see a return to pre-COVID levels in 2019.
Jamaica and other countries in the Caribbean rely heavily on tourism to generate aviation traffic.