Macau International Airport’s operator expects the facility to handle more scheduled passenger services in May compared to April, when the tally of daily commercial flight movements was in single digits. Nonetheless, 5,000 flights that had on paper been scheduled for May due to previously-drafted timetables, are to be cancelled, the airport company noted to GGRAsia in a Friday update. The ongoing Covid-19 pandemic has drastically disrupted air traffic regionally and globally.
In May, Macau’s air hub (pictured in a file photo) is likely to handle daily 20 aircraft “movements” – commercial flights in and out, serving an average daily of only 35 passengers, said Macau International Airport Co Ltd, a body known locally as CAM. The firm estimated 5,220 flights that the airport would have handled in other trading conditions would be cancelled.
Those more than 5,000 cancelled flights would have connected Macau to several cities across Greater China, Southeast Asia and Northeast Asia, according to updates on the official website of the Macau airport.
Air Macau, the city’s flag-carrier operator, has maintained a number of flights for May. They encompass connections to several major cities in mainland China, including Beijing, Shanghai, and Hangzhou; Taipei in Taiwan; Tokyo and Osaka in Japan; Seoul in South Korea and Bangkok in Thailand, according to the carrier’s latest updates.
The airport operator stressed that its projected numbers for May could change depending on any further adjustments in the immigration entry policies either of Macau or other jurisdictions to which the city ordinarily has flight connections.
In April – up to the 22nd of the month – Macau International Airport hosted daily an average of only four commercial flights: a 71-percent decrease when compared to the 14 daily commercial aircraft movements handled in March.
The April flights – as recorded up to April 22 – served the mainland Chinese cities of Beijing, Shanghai, Xiamen, Chengdu, Nanning and Nanjing; Taipei in Taiwan; and Phnom Penh in Cambodia, CAM noted to GGRAsia.
In mid-April, the Macau government had announced that all passengers planning to fly to Macau would need to present prior to boarding an incoming aircraft, a medical test certificate showing they were free of Covid-19 infection. The city’s government had noted in a press briefing on Sunday that such requirement was still in effect, in order to reduce the risk in Macau of a new outbreak of infection.
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"The travel impediments [in mainland China] will lead to reduced visitation into Macau for the next few weeks at least, with Chinese New Year visitation being impacted"
Vitaly Umansky, Tianjiao Yu and Kelsey Zhu
Analysts at Sanford C. Bernstein Ltd