Seattle’s 1,000km advantage

With the arrival of the new and more efficient breed of long range aircraft, patterns of airline operation on the Transpacific are changing.

The fact that Seattle is around 1,000km closer to Asia than Los Angeles presents the airport with some unique opportunities.

At the moment Los Angeles and San Francisco have more than twice the number of airlines and routes operating to Asia than Seattle. Los Angeles has 12 routes operated by 16 airlines; San Francisco has 13 routes operated by 14 airlines; and Seattle has 6 routes operated by 6 airlines.

The majority of non-stop services are to China and North East Asia but each airport has some operations to South and/or South East Asia, to destinations such as Delhi, Hong Kong and Manila.

However, there are a number of major cities which have been just out of reach for aircraft until recently. Cities such as Kuala Lumpur, Jakarta and Chennai continue to lie at, or just beyond, the range of the new A350-900 and the B787-900 aircraft from Los Angeles and San Francisco – but not from Seattle. The 1,000km makes all the difference. Whether there is a viable market for non-stop travel between Seattle and each of these three cities remains to be seen, but there is no doubt that looking at these markets should be on someone’s ‘to-do’ list.

Discover more in our latest report, the Future of Transpacific Services.

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