[Photo by Yonhap]
Despite news of vaccine progress, the Covid-19 woes show no sign of relief for the Korean airline industry, data on flight card spending and activity showed.
According to the Bank of Korea on Wednesday, flight spending out of credit card records stopped at 18.9 billion won ($17.1 million) in September, down 48.4 percent from a month ago and 94.4 percent from a year earlier.
Flight expenditures rose for three straight months amid increased domestic travel from easing in virus cases but turned negative in August upon resurgence in Covid-19 infections at home.
Flight activity accordingly stagnated. The output in air passenger transportation index slipped to 17.9 in September from 28.0 in August, according to data by Statistics Korea. The reading is against sales reference of 100 in 2015. The index turned lower after improving from a historic bottom of 14.0 in April.
Air cargo service remained active. The output index for air freight service, which hovered below 100 in January and February, peaked at 196.9 in May and stayed high at 163.8 in September.
By Lee Ha-yeon
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