U.S. airline industry would lose about 90,000 jobs to the pandemic.

U.S. airlines, heavily affected by the drop in ticket sales since the beginning of the pandemic, will cut 90,000 jobs between March and December, the federation representing companies in this sector estimated Thursday.

See also: Low-cost airlines have adapted better the Covid-19 crisis.

According to the association Airlines for America, the number of full-time workers in passenger air transport will be reduced from 460,000 in March to 370,000 by the end of December, a drop of almost 20%, reported AFP.

This would represent the lowest level since at least 1987.

At a time when the United States faces a new explosion in the number of cases of covid-19 and the authorities are intensifying the restriction measures, the number of passengers carried in the country remained in recent weeks 65% lower than the same period last year.

See also: Which airlines are on the verge of “bankruptcy” because the COVID-19 pandemic?

To cope with the decline in activity, airlines first resorted to voluntary departure or early retirement plans.

In the spring of the year, they had committed not to lay off anyone until September 30, in exchange for subsidies totalling $25 billion.

But in the absence of an agreement between Democrats and Republicans on the extension of this financial aid, United Airlines and American Airlines laid off 32,000 people in October.

Four other small businesses – Compass Airlines, ExpressJet, RavnAir Group and Trans States Airlines – closed down, Airlines for America said Thursday, in a document listing the effects of the pandemic on the aviation industry.

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