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Air Cargo Insurance Statistics: Soaring Insights

January 2, 2024
 By Jacob Lee
Air Cargo Insurance Statistics: Soaring Insights
Last Modified: March 14, 2024
Air cargo insurance statistics can give you some key insights into the inner workings of this industry. If you’re sending freight by plane, our data will show you why getting coverage is essential.

Key takeaways: 

  • 65.5 million tons of air cargo was moved between 2017-2021
  • The 2023 global cargo transportation insurance market was $54.12 billion
  • The airline accident rate in 2022 was 1.21% 
  • The global air cargo insurance market size was $19.4 billion in 2022
  • About 26.9 percent of freight traveled on the North America — Asia route

We’ll discuss air cargo insurance statistics to demonstrate the importance of protecting your freight. 

Air Cargo Insurance Statistics Explained

Despite being one of the safest ways to send freight, it’s still recommended that you insure any cargo. . While heightened security tends to reduce theft, there are a variety of other problems that can occur. 

This can include:

  • Human error
  • Extreme weather
  • Turbulence
  • Cargo fires

Air cargo insurance is lumped together with other methods of coverage, such as land and marine. Each of these come together to form the larger cargo insurance market. 

Carts with air freight that is about to be loaded into a plane

Volume of Air Cargo Shipments

Shippers all across the globe use air transport to send their cargo to different places. Over the past few years, this transportation method has become increasingly popular. Initially, it saw a spike when ports became highly congested and continues to be popular with time sensitive shipments. 

Volume of Air Cargo (2017-2021)

YearAmount of Worldwide Air Freight (in a million metric tons)
201761.5 million
201863.5 million
201961.5 million
202055.4 million
202165.6 million

Provided by Statista 

As the data shows, the amount of freight transported by air has steadily increased over the past few years. The sharp decline in 2020, likely caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, has since recovered as supply chains normalize. 

With so many shipments in the air, the likelihood of freight being damaged is higher. This will likely increase the need for air cargo insurance coverage amongst shippers. 

If you’re shipping by sea, then read our article on ocean freight safety to learn about the potential dangers.

Air Cargo Route Statistics

As a result of the increasing demand for air cargo transport, the amount of routes for planes to travel on has also expanded. We’ve included some data that shows the most commonly used routes that are used to transport air freight. 

  • In 2020, the North America — Asia route made up 26.9 percent of all air freight shipments
  • The Europe — Asia route came in second place, making up 20.8 percent of all air cargo in 2020
  • The North America — Europe route made up 12 percent of air cargo transported during 2020
  • Coming in third place, routes within Asia made up 7.4 percent of air cargo during 2020 
  • In fourth, the Asia — Middle East route had 6.8 percent of the world’s cargo traveling on it during 2020. 
  • Other global routes, often irregular or from charters, make up the remaining gap. 

Expanding routes means shippers have more options when it comes to transporting their goods. That said, growth into new geographic areas can introduce more risks and increase the need for insurance coverage.

If you’re shipping by plane, it’s important to know what it will cost. Our article on air cargo insurance rates we’ll help give you the insights you require. 

Statistics of Airline Safety Records

Another critical insight to consider when it comes to air cargo insurance is the safety record of airlines. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) releases safety reports that keep track of accidents and other incidents that occur. 

IATA 2022 Safety Report

Accident Type Occurrence 
All Accident Rate1.21 %
Accident Rate for IATA Member Airlines0.49 %
Total Accidents39
Jet Hull Losses0.17%
Turboprop Hull Losses1.47 %
Total Flights32.2 %

Provided by IATA 

While air transport is fairly safe, there is data to prove accidents can still occur. Therefore, it’s essential to protect your goods in the event that something goes horribly wrong. 

Amount of Air Cargo Insurance Claims

Obtaining data on air cargo insurance claims is difficult, as there is a small amount of publicly available information on the topic. That said, there are statistics on aviation insurance that provide some revealing insights. 

Aviation Claims for Risks That Affect Shippers (2016–2020)

Collisions/Crash 30%
Travel Issues (late delivery, delay, baggage)13%
Damaged Goods 24%

Provided by Allianz

Aviation insurance is coverage used to cover the risks involved when operating an aircraft. The damages that airlines file claims for are also risks that can negatively impact freight belonging to shippers. This means that businesses and airline companies face the same freight concerns when a plane leaves the runway. 

A truck with a scissor lift platform that's raised up to an entrance on a plane

Size of the Air Cargo Insurance Segment

The global cargo insurance industry was valued at $71.4 billion in 2022 and is projected to be worth as much as $106 billion by 2032. That said, the air segment of this market makes a small but sizeable portion of this overall amount. We’ve provided data demonstrating this. 

  • In 2022, the global air cargo insurance industry had a total value of $19.4 billion
  • The value of the global air cargo insurance market is projected to be $26.4 billion by 2028, growing at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 4.5 percent 
  • Europe holds the largest market share of air cargo insurance, accounting for 34.9% in 2022
  • In second place is North America, which holds 26.4 percent of the air cargo insurance market share

Air cargo insurance is highly sought after amongst shippers of various commodities around the world. Therefore, getting protection on your goods is essential when shipping them internationally.  

If you’d rather move your cargo with a vessel, then check out our article on marine cargo insurance statistics. 

Protect Your Shipments with Freight Insurance Coverage

At Freight Insurance Coverage, we specialize in offering tailored solutions that meet your specific needs. Our commitment is to provide you with the most reliable and cost-effective insurance option that ensures your freight is protected from the moment it’s picked up, to its final destination. 

Our quote forms automatically apply the cost of insurance. This means you’ll know the full estimate of how much you’ll spend when shipping a load of insured freight with us. Get started today by filling out your quote to protect your cargo. Our team is also available at (866) 975-0749 for extra assistance.


Statista, Worldwide Air Freight Traffic from 2004 to 2021, with An Estimate for 2022 and 2023 (in million metric tons), 2023

Statista, Distribution of International Scheduled Freight Tonne-Kilometers (FTKs) Worldwide in 2020, by Route Area, 2023

Verified Market Research, Cargo Transportation Insurance Market Size and Forecast, 2023

Allied Market Research, Cargo Insurance Market Size, Share, Competitive Landscape and Trend Analysis Report by Insurance Type, Distribution Channel, and by End User, 2023

International Air Transportation Association, IATA Releases 2022 Airline Safety Performance, 2023

International Air Transportation Association, Air Cargo Demand Strengthens Despite Challenges, 2023

Allianz, Aviation Claims: Top Causes of Loss by Number of Claims, 2021

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