The swine flu affected the air travel, which dropped by 9.3% during May, according to the International Air Transport Agency (IATA). May has been the first month for flights to be affected by the AH1N1 impact, IATA informs, quoted by AFP.

The most affected have been the companies flying to Latin America and Mexico, which saw a 40% drop in demand. The rapid spread of the AH1N1 virus led to the first pandemic of the century and gave another blow to the commercial air travel industry, already bruised by the economic crisis. The traffic dropped 10% in February and May, but recovered slightly in April helped by Easter travelling. Nevertheless, it recorded 3.1% losses.

"This is the most difficult crisis we had to deal with", IATA manager Giovanni Bisignani said, quoted by AFP. IATA was expected that the global air travel industry will see 9 billion dollars losses in the beginning of June. This is a double figure compared to the March estimates, which indicated losses worth of 4.7 billion dollars for 2009, according to Financial Times.