How Has the Pandemic Reshaped the Transportation Industry?

transportation industry

If part of your daily work as an insurance agent involves providing advice and coverage to professionals working in the transportation industry, you may have received numerous questions lately regarding the impact of the recent COVID-19 pandemic on the industry. Although no sector was entirely unscathed from the pandemic, the transportation industry, in particular, saw some interesting effects, including decreased passenger air travel, shorter or eliminated commute times for many, and increased demand for shipping of certain essential goods. To help your clients understand how the pandemic has affected their business, it’s important to examine some fundamental shifts.

Passenger Travel, Especially Air Travel, Has Decreased Significantly

Perhaps one of the most noteworthy changes in the transportation industry due to the pandemic is the sudden decline in passenger travel. While passenger travel decreased significantly across all forms of transportation, in part due to the lack of commutes for many remote workers, air travel, in particular, saw a relatively sharp drop-off. Here are some of the critical ways passenger travel was affected.

  • Air travel has slowed significantly during the pandemic, with many airline sales dropping dramatically
  • Rail travel has also decreased, with some providers restricting or even suspending service
  • Car travel, including travel by taxi and rideshare service, has slowed in part due to remote work and fewer commutes

Essential Goods Still Require Efficient Transportation

Despite the reduced demand for passenger travel, essential goods still needed quick and efficient transportation. This meant the industry saw the following changes.

  • Consumer goods, especially essential ones such as groceries, paper products, and disinfectants, largely continued to be transported efficiently during the pandemic
  • In some cases, there were more trucks and planes available for transportation than there were goods available due to a slowed-down supply chain
  • Once supply chains were restored to their usual capacity, cargo in most industries continued to be shipped, creating work for long-haul dispatcher, truckers, and rig drivers
  • Some industries, such as the entertainment business or the restaurant industry, saw less demand and therefore less need for shipping of goods across the board

Long-Term Industry Effects May Require Future Planning

Finally, the pandemic may require many transportation companies to look to the future and adjust accordingly. Some long-term effects could include:

  • Less demand for rideshare services and public transportation
  • Rises in bicycle, car, and motorcycle sales
  • Less air and rail travel
  • Steady demand for goods shipping

Additionally, built-in safety measures have become more important than ever. Transportation industry companies may need to invest in:

  • Sanitizing and disinfecting company vehicles
  • Ensuring employees can practice health and safety measures
  • Shifting to supporting more popular modes of transportation, such as private vehicles rather than public transport

Providing critical insurance coverage to clients also means informing them of key industry shifts that could affect their line of work. If your clients have questions about the pandemic’s effects on the industry, use these facts as a discussion guide.

About Cochrane and Company

For more than six decades, Cochrane & Company has been proudly at the forefront of the insurance industry. Our experience has enabled us to innovate in powerful ways, reimagining the E&S market, and providing technology solutions that make it easy to do business with us. Licensed in all 50 states, we proudly serve clients across the nation, providing personalized and powerful solutions to help you become an even better partner for your clients. Speak to one of our experienced professionals today by calling (509) 462-1148.


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