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American Reports Sharp Booking Increase, While CDC Warns of COVID-19 “Fourth Wave”

American Reports Sharp Booking Increase, While CDC Warns of COVID-19 “Fourth Wave”
Joe Cortez

As millions line up to get their COVID-19 vaccinations, American Airlines says the seven-day moving average of net bookings is approximately 90 percent of the level experienced at the same time in 2019, suggesting an accelerated road to recovery. The news comes as the CDC is warning travelers to be prudent about their plans, suggesting a “fourth wave” of the COVID-19 pandemic could be coming.

American Airlines says their bookings are up significantly, suggesting that their road to recovery could be much faster than originally anticipated. In an 8-K filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Fort Worth-based carrier announced their bookings based on a seven-day moving average is around 90 percent compared to 2019.

American Bookings up to 90 Percent, Domestic Load Factor 80 Percent of 2019 Numbers

Looking forward to the first quarter of 2021, American anticipated their total seat miles and bookings would be much softer, due to the fact that the United States created a COVID-19 testing mandate for anyone returning to the United States. However, due to more individuals getting vaccinated against the condition caused by the novel Coronavirus and its variants, the airline says they are seeing domestic travel numbers that are along the lines of 2019.

“As infection and hospitalization rates have materially declined and vaccine distribution has increased during the quarter, the Company has experienced recent strength in domestic and short-haul international bookings,” the company revealed in their filing. “As of March 26, the Company’s seven day moving average of its net bookings is approximately 90% of the level experienced in 2019, with a domestic load factor of approximately 80% during that same period. The Company presently expects this strength in bookings to continue through the end of the first quarter and into the second quarter.”

The announcement came hours before the director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, said at a White House briefing that she had a feeling of “impending doom” over a potential fourth wave of the disease. With travelers getting emboldened about taking long-awaited trips, the doctor asked Americans to limit their travel to “essential” needs only.

“When we see that uptick in cases what we have seen before is that things really have a tendency to surge and to surge big,” said Dr. Walensky, as quoted by USA Today. “I just worry that we will see the surges that we saw over the summer and the winter again.”

COVID-19 Vaccines Continue to Ramp Up, With Near-Nationwide Availability by April 19

According to the CDC, a total of 95 million Americans has taken at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, but only 15 percent of the entire population is fully inoculated. According to USA Today, the White House says 90 percent of the adult U.S. population will be eligible for a vaccine by April 19, 2021.

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1 Comment

  1. c502cid

    March 31, 2021 at 6:51 am

    The announcement came hours before the director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, said at a White House briefing that she had a feeling of “impending doom” over a potential fourth wave of the disease.

    Is this part of “follow the science” now?

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