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Operational status

This page gives a quick regional overview

Updated 20 May 2020 

In general, air freight capacity is limited due to cancellations of passenger flights. Air cargo capacity is almost 30% lower compared to a year ago. The demand for air charter flights is very high and we are arranging our own charter flights to provide capacity.

As a consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic there is a surge in exports of personal protective equipment (PPE) and other medical products, in particular from China, and thus an increase in demand for air charter flights out of China.

However, we also see a number of countries temporarily limiting or banning the export of PPE and other medical equipment relevant to COVID-19.

Due to the COVID-19 related disruptions, there is an increased demand for storage space which some DSV locations are able to offer. Please contact your local office for details.


We remain operational everywhere although in Italy, Spain, Portugal and France with interruptions. The priority is on the flow of essential goods (mainly food and pharmaceutical/medical products). Imposed restrictions at borders cause delays but in most cases these have become less significant. More information on border crossing delays.

Overall, the situation is far from normal but now restrictions are being lifted and lockdowns eased slowly. 

Demand for air charter from Asia to Europe is increasing more that capacity and thus prices especially from Shanghai in China are increasing.

Since 1 April we have regular charter cargo flights between four destinations in North and Latin America (Atlanta, New York, Chicago and Mexico City) and three European destinations: Luxembourg, Liège and Brussels. Please contact your local office for details.

Presently, sea freight rates from Europe to Asia hits new heights as capacity is extremely tight.

Middle East

Some restrictions at border crossings but alternative routes are being used. Most lockdowns and curfews are expected to last towards the end of May. Backlogs are accumulating and, in particular, air capacity is an issue at many airports. There is only a limited amount of staff at most ports, airports and customs offices and, presently, the number of working hours are reduced due to Ramadan. 


Intra-Asia air freight capacity is very tight and freight rates extremely high. Backlogs at intra-Asian borders are improving slowly. Delays are reducing. 

Most Asian ports are fully operational and volumes are increasing. Carriers continue to announce blank sailings and ocean capacity from Asia to the world has been tighter since mid March.

With the very tight situation on airfreight, demand for export via sea is increasing. Available capacity by sea ex South China is now tight, in particular to Europe, the Mediterranean region, the South American East Coast and Oceania.

In China, we have resumed operations in all our locations. All DSV offices in Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau are open and operational. Activity levels are close to normal with only few restrictions. Following the recently detected new COVID-19 cases in Wuhan and Harbin, the situation will be monitored closely.

While the activity level at many ocean ports in China is still reduced, most ports have normalised operations and customs authorities are open. Most CFS warehouses are open. In the coming weeks, we expect severe congestion problems at ports in the entire region and a tight capacity situation as cargo volume increases. 

Air capacity from the APAC region is limited and shortage combined with the increasing demand result in increasing freight rates. Air cargo capacity from Asia to North America is extremely tight and prices continue to increase.

In China, we see heavy backlogs but the situation improves gradually. Airports in China are open for business. Air cargo capacity from China and Hong Kong was first to decline as a result of the coronavirus crisis but is now back to 2019 levels and increasing. The demand for air charter flights out of China has been surging and our Oriental Dixie air freight charter service between the US and China continues to run as planned.

Road transport within China is almost normal, except in the Hubei province. Backlogs and delays due to requirements by local authorities in different provinces are expected.

For shipments to and from China, DSV can provide air charter, international rail, trucking and multi-modal solutions. Contact your local DSV representative for details.

For more details concerning China, please see our China website (English version)

India is under lockdown and domestic passenger flights, trains and interstate busses are suspended until 31 May. International commercial passenger flights are banned from landing until 31 May. All state borders are closed but transport of essential goods such as food and medical supplies are permitted and all DSV branches have the required curfew passes.  Shortage of drivers impacts transportation throughout the country.

Bangladesh, Pakistan and Sri Lanka are also in various states of lockdown until further notice.

North America

The US and Canadian governments are not restricting freight movements.

Our Dixie air charter service between the North and Latin America and Europe has been modified and serves Atlanta, New York, Chicago and Mexico City from Luxembourg, Liège and Brussels. Our Oriental Dixie air freight charter service between US and China continue to run as planned. Schedules are subject to change and vary between one and more weekly departures depending on route.

Air charter space from Asia to North America is extremely tight with rates at an all time high.

Vessel capacity reductions of around 20% in key trade lanes allows carriers to maintain price levels. Capacity is expected to begin increasing again in July.

Latin America

Airlines have suspended flights into May but continue to operate while obeying the authorities' restrictions. Air capacity from the LATAM region is limited and many airports experience congestion problems on export cargo.

Connections from key South American airports to USA and Mexico will be available to connect with our charter flights to and from Europe and APAC.

Road transport in Mexico is running without restrictions. 

Ports are operating almost as normal. There is a shortage in transport units and freight rates are increasing.


We continue to see measures such as quarantines and restrictions at border crossings.  Only  essential items are allowed to be transported between countries and the extensive screening procedures is causing delays. 

On 1 May, South Africa began easing the lockdown and industries are now working at approximately 50% of their usual capacity. Since 14 May, e-Commerce businesses have been fully operational again (with the exception of alcohol and cigarette sales which are not allowed). 

Non-essential items already at a South African port may now be moved to our warehouses and/or forwarded to the consignees, our customers.

South African airports continue to operate at reduced capacity and while some carriers have resumed scheduled flights, capacity remains constrained.

For more detailed information concerning COVID-19 related restrictions in each country, you may want to visit the COVID-19 restriction map by Safeture (DSV provides the link for convenience and does not endorse the provider, nor have any relationship to them.)