Results

BTS - Bureau of Transportation Statistics

01/14/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 01/14/2021 10:10

Mid-November 2020 U.S. Passenger Airline Employment Down More Than 1,400 FTEs from Mid-October

All 20 scheduled service passenger airlines (mid-November)

  • 366,750 FTEs
  • Down 19.3% (87,533) from November 2019 (454,283)
  • Down 11.8% (49,296) from November 2016 (416,046)

Four network airlines (mid-November)

  • 217,973 FTEs, 59.4% of total scheduled passenger airline FTEs
  • Down 24.4% (70,174) from November 2019 (288,147)
  • Down 20.0% (54,374) from November 2016 (272,347)
  • Up 0.2% (457) from mid-October 2020 (217,516)
  • Down 25.1% (73,236) from mid-March 2020 (291,209)

Network airlines operate a significant portion of their flights using at least one hub where connections are made for flights to down-line destinations or spoke cities. Note that beginning with January 2018 data, Virgin America's numbers are included with Alaska Airlines in the network category.

Five low-cost airlines (mid-November)

  • 91,905 FTEs, 25.1% of total scheduled passenger airline FTEs
  • Down 5.8% (5,618) from November 2019 (97,523)
  • Up 7.6% (6,466) from November 2016 (85,439)
  • Down 0.3% (248) from mid-October 2020 (92,153)
  • Down 6.7% (6,626) from mid-March 2020 (98,531)

Low-cost airlines operate under a low-cost business model, with infrastructure and aircraft operating costs below the overall industry average.

8 regional airlines (mid-November)

  • 49,805 FTEs, 13.6% of total scheduled passenger airline FTEs
  • Down 17.5% (10,579) from November 2019 (60,384)
  • Down 1.6% (820) from November 2016 (50,625)
  • Down 1.0% (488) from mid-October 2020 (50,293)
  • Down 18.4% (11,198) from mid-March 2020 (61,003)

Regional carriers typically provide service from small cities, using primarily regional jets to support the network carriers' hub and spoke systems.

Top Employers by Scheduled Passenger Airline Group

  • Network: American 84,568 FTEs
  • Low-cost: Southwest 56,900 FTEs
  • Regional: SkyWest 16,706 FTEs

Four other airlines

Other carriers generally operate within specific niche markets. They are: Hawaiian Airlines, Sun Country Airlines, Silver Airlines and Eastern Airlines.

Reporting Notes

Airlines that operate at least one aircraft that has more than 60 seats or the capacity to carry a payload of passengers, cargo and fuel weighing more than 18,000 pounds must report monthly employment statistics.

Data are compiled from monthly reports filed with BTS by commercial air carriers as of Jan. 6. Additional airline employment data and previous releases can be found on the BTS website. BTS has scheduled release of December passenger airline employment data for Feb. 18.