Singapore Airlines (SIA) Group reported a 99.5 per cent decline in passenger carriage during the first quarter of the 2020/2021 financial year, which led to a net loss of SGD1 billion.
Passenger carriage fell 99.4 per cent for SIA, 99.8 per cent for regional arm SilkAir and 99.9 per cent for budget airline Scoot.
Group revenue declined SGD3,251 million year-on-year to SGD851 million during the first quarter, a fall of 79.3 per cent.
During the quarter, SIA scaled back operations due to border closures, but retained services to key cities. The airline expects passenger capacity to be approximately seven per cent compared to pre-COVID-19 levels by end of the second quarter of FY20/21.
In a press statement, SIA noted that the recovery trajectory in international air travel is slower than initially expected. "It will take between two to four years for passenger traffic numbers to return to pre-pandemic levels."
Meanwhile, the integration of SilkAir into SIA remains on track. "Customers will benefit from a step up to the Singapore Airlines Inflight experience as we transition the SilkAir narrowbody operations into SIA, starting with the 737-800 aircraft, in Q4 FY2020."
SIA added, "The integration of SilkAir into SIA will also deliver greater economies of scale for the Group, and allow it to deploy the right aircraft to meet the demand for air travel as it returns."