australian aviation logo

Aviation sector’s hours hardest hit, reveals landmark survey

written by Adam Thorn | April 27, 2020

Qantas 747-438(ER) VH-OEH departs runway 16 at YMML bound for the Antarcti 2
A Qantas 747-438(ER) VH-OEH departs runway 16 at YMML bound for the Antarctic (Victor Pody)

A landmark survey of Australia’s business confidence during the coronavirus crisis will show that 61 per cent of those working in aviation have seen their hours reduced – significantly more than any other industry questioned.

It will also reveal how younger workers in the sector are disproportionately struggling with their mental health.

The ongoing survey, commissioned by Australian Aviation’s sister company Momentum Intelligence, has so far sought the opinions of more than 6,000 professionals working across accounting, aviation, defence, financial services, law, mortgage and finance broking, and real estate.

Already, more than 900 in the aviation industries have given their views, with the first instalment of results to be published later this week.

The headline findings, however, will show that 61 per cent in the aviation sector have seen their hours reduced already, compared with just 22 per cent in accounting, 21 per cent in defence and 22 per cent in financial services.


The COVID-19 Business Confidence Survey is designed to serve as a continually updated barometer of how businesses, and working Australians, are adapting to the changed working and social environment throughout the pandemic.

Red = “My hours have been reduced”; Green = “They have not been reduced”

This will enable us to map attitudes, confidence and business activities as they evolve by market sectors, revealing which industries and professions are adapting most effectively to the “new normal”.

The survey also reveals a worrying trend of those younger disproportionately suffering with their mental health.

Just 60 per cent of those aged in their 20s said they were in positive mental health, compared with 87 per cent of those aged 70+.

The survey also sought to go beyond numbers to find out the thoughts and feelings of those affected by the crisis, with many stood down workers talking of the reality of trying to survive.

“I’m a stood down Virgin Australia Cabin Crew team member,” said one. “I worked full-time crewing long-haul flights on the 777. I’m also a casual grade 3 flight instructor in the GA sector. Both roles have been reduced to zero hours a month.”

“The governments support package to the industry was non-existent,” said another respondent. “Waiving landing charges, air service charges and taxes when they closed state borders and all but grounded airlines, is about as useful as flogging a dead horse.”

The full results will be published later this week.

You need to be a member to post comments. Become a member today!

Comments (5)

  • AgentGerko


    Travel agents have been ht harder than aviation. We are doing virtually zero sales as we have nothing to sell. No tours, no cruises, no international flights. And little chance of international travel reopening for the rest of the year.

  • Sarah


    Govt handouts for the industry are needed but the best thing that can happen is fights to restart – removing the border restrictions from the states as a start, and then international where the regions are suitable. The sooner that happens for everyone in aviation, the better. Everyone in aviation agrees – while the payslip is important, this is an industry where people love their job. I want to be back at work and seeing the sky full of aircraft and people contributing to the economy.

  • Lee


    Any personal definition of “mental health” is so subjective that it’s really impossible to reach any conclusions.

  • Ken


    He or she is blaming the Australian government’s (which means the Australian taxpayers) for doing the right thing?

    What ignorance; state governments closed state borders, not the commonwealth. It’s a federation. Look it up.

  • Monirul


    Where did the money go from all the billion dollars profit those days, not even 10% of the profit stayed with the airlines for BAF days, rest of the profit went to greedy shareholders. Money laundering was going on for years and government knew about it.

    It is time to ask some serious questions. Employee do not have basic rights these days. Union leaders are being corrupted for years already. It is time to ask some serious questions. It is time to understand that we the common people, our back are against the wall. A revolution is the only way to go. Let us be united, liberals and labour won’t do us any good. UNITY

Comments are closed.

You don't have credit card details available. You will be redirected to update payment method page. Click OK to continue.