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Seven Trends That Will Reshape the Airline Industry

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Seven Trends That Will Reshape the Airline Industry

Boston Consulting Group,

5 min read
7 take-aways
Audio & text

What's inside?

The 2020s will bring turbulence – and new opportunities – for the airline industry.

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The world’s airlines have been flying high, enjoying healthy growth and double-digit profit margins during the 2010s. But even before the pandemic brought air travel to a virtual standstill, industry watchers were pointing to uncertainties and potential disruption. A team of experts from Boston Consulting Group – including managing directors and senior partners – outline seven chief trends that industry decision makers should keep on their radar as the industry revs up post-pandemic.


The airline industry is becoming more customer-centric.

Although airlines enjoyed sustained profitability during the 2010s – and double-digit operating profit margins, sometimes more than 20% – the dynamism of the business environment means industry decision makers must stay abreast of trends and prepare diligently for the future. Scenario planning will become increasingly important. In one major trend, airlines will, belatedly, focus on the customer experience. Customers will benefit from enhanced personalization throughout the travel experience, while airlines continue to build travel ecosystems that will help them serve customers better.

Airlines are enlisting data science and advanced analytics in that effort.

With the goal of improving the customer experience, airlines will increasingly turn to advanced analytics. They’ll develop the ability to make “...

About the Authors

Pranay Jhunjhunwala, Tom von Oertzen and Alan Wise are managing directors and senior partners at Boston Consulting Group. Ben Wade, Nicolas Boutin, Hean-Ho Loh and Masao Ukon are managing directors and partners. Yana Topalova is a partner.

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