AIRLINE FREQUENCY AND CAPACITY TREND STATISTICS
Each month OAG produces an Airline Frequency and Capacity Trend Statistics Report, flight data included is sourced via Schedules Analyzer; a cutting-edge platform for airline schedule analysis. The report contains key facts and figures including Seats by Region, Top 20 Country Pairs, Top 20 Airlines, and Top 20 Airports, plus additional information regarding the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and the recovery of the travel industry. The data below is for the month of January 2023.
SEATS BY REGION
- This month, global capacity has increased again, up to 427.1m, which is a 3.3% increase on last month. Capacity is creeping closer to 2019 levels, now just 7.7% behind the same month in 2019.
- North America is very close to recovery now, just 0.9% below 2019.
- North East Asia, the next biggest region is just 7.5% behind, having seen an increase of 21.2% on last month, following the news that China will reopen to international travel from 8th January.
TOP TWENTY COUNTRY PAIRS
- Mexico - USA remains the largest country pair this month, with 4m seats operating between these neighbors. Capacity is now 18.9% ahead of January 2019, but month on month has declined a little, down 2%.
- This month sees several European country pairs decline compared to last month now that the busy holiday season is over. Typically capacity is down by 10-12% across Spain-UK, Germany-Spain, Spain-France and Germany-UK, as a result of LCCs mostly trimming back capacity.
- The largest Asian country pair, Japan-South Korea, remains a third smaller than in January 2019, but carriers have added 11% capacity this month.
TOP TWENTY AIRLINES
- There is little change this month for the US majors, and they are all sitting around 15% below 2019 frequency levels, whilst in China there is a different picture emerging. Significant frequency growth is planned by China Southern this month, with flights increasing by 41.2% on last month, and Air China expects to have 30.8% more flights this month.
- Turkish Airlines is also adding frequency this month with an increase of 10.8% to January flights compared to December. Turkish is now 2.1% ahead of 2019.
- Two carriers in the Top 20 stand out as being 'most recovered'. Spirit Airlines expects to operate 46.2% more flights than in 2019 this month, whilst Indigo expects to be 28.6% ahead of 2019. Air Canada is lagging behind, still 37.2% behind 2019.
TOP TWENTY AIRPORTS
- Unsurprisingly Guangzhou has seen the biggest increase this month, with 50.2% more seats than last month, taking the airport to just under 15% below January 2019. Shenzhen has also seen considerable growth this month, with an increase of 20.9% in seats month on month.
- There is little other significant movement this month at the world's biggest airports. Most recovered in this group is Denver where capacity is 21.8% ahead of January 2019, and Las Vegas is close behind with 20.2% more seats than in 2019.
- Singapore Changi lingers in the least recovered spot of the Top 20, with seats still a quarter below their January 2019 level.
- China has finally seen the domestic market increase above 2019 levels again, with seats in January sitting at 14.4% ahead of January 2019.
- China remains the second largest domestic market after the US which is now mostly flat year on year.
- As reported previously, Indonesia's domestic market still has some way to recover, at 20.2% behind 2019.
- This month, domestic capacity is now 7.7% behind January 2019.
- International capacity sits at 11.8% below January 2019.
FREQUENCY & CAPACITY STATISTICS DECODED
All data is sourced from OAG Schedules and is for the current month and previous months. Change in capacity and frequency is then calculated in each category against the same month in 2019 and against the previous month. Data is unadjusted for the leap year effect. In 2021 we moved to ranking the Top 20’s (Country Pairs, Airlines and Airports) by the current month, rather than using pre-COVID rankings.
There are six categories as defined below:
- Seats by Region is seat capacity for the current month to, from and within each global sub region.
- Top 20 Country Pairs are those international country pairs with most seat capacity based on the current month.
- Top 20 Airlines are the 20 largest global airlines by flights based on the current month.
- Top 20 Airports are the 20 largest airports by capacity based on the current month.
- Domestic Markets are the 10 largest markets by seats.
- COVID19 impacts domestic and international by month.
Each category includes a comparison in each of the above categories against the previous month, to highlight where frequency and capacity may be starting to recover.
Data for December 2022 is based on the OAG Schedules data as of 10th January 2023.