While in the past, Simple Flying has published articles on the world’s busiest air routes, both domestic and international today we are going to see which routes are the five most competitive.
Competitive routes are much different from routes where one airline has a monopoly on flights between certain airports. When one airline offers the only way to fly from A to B, they can charge as much for tickets as the market will allow.
Many factors determine the price of a ticket
The ticket price can be to the customer’s advantage on routes where more than one airline competes. Of course, the number of airlines operating on one particular route also has much to do with passenger demand. The presence or lack of competition isn’t the only thing that drives prices, with the time of day also contributing to the ticket price. If you were to take a flight that arrived at your destination in time for a business meeting, you would expect to pay much more for a ticket than one where your flight arrived around midnight. Business and leisure destinations also differ significantly, with business location tickets being much more expensive than those to a vacation destination.
The time of year also determines the price of a ticket, as those held hostages by school holidays can testify. The season also affects how much airlines can charge for tickets. During the summer, if you are looking to fly from Northern Europe to the Mediterranean Sea, you can expect to pay a lot more than it would cost you for the same flight in the winter. Another example would be North America, where flights from the northern states and Canada to Florida and the Caribbean skyrocket during the winter.
The Middle East now has the most competitive flights
Before the COVID-19 pandemic, domestic and international flights in Asia were the most competitive, but this has changed. In 2022 flights between Middle Eastern cities in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates have become the most competitive.
Flight between Cairo and Jeddah is not only the busiest route in the world but the most competitive. Image: GCmaps
In its latest report, aviation industry global travel data provider OAG says that of the ten most competitive routes Cairo International Airport (CAI) to King Abdulaziz International Airport (JED) is not only the world’s busiest but also has the most competition. While Saudi Arabia flag carrier Saudia has a 53.8% share of the traffic, it competes with eight other airlines. Between the Egyptian capital and the Red Sea city of Jeddah, there are 36 daily flights.
Vietjet has the largest number of flights between DAD and ICN. Photo: Vietjet
In second place for the world’s most competitive flights, we have to look to Asia, where flights between Da Nang International Airport (DAD) in Vietnam and Incheon International Airport (ICN) in South Korea have nine carriers competing on the route. Of the airlines, VietJet has the largest capacity at 28%.
Seven other airlines compete with Egyptair on the CAI to RUH route. Photo: Egyptair.
In third place are flights between Cairo International Airport (CAI) and King Khalid International Airport (RUH) in Riyadh, with 25 flights a day operated by eight different airlines including Egyptair.
ICN has two of the world’s most competitive routes.Photo: Getty Images
In fourth place are flights between Bangkok Suvarnabhumi International Airport (BKK) in Thailand and Incheon International Airport (ICN) in South Korea. On the route, eight airlines compete with an average of eight flights per day.
Turkey is a very popular vacation destination for Russian’s. Photo: Getty Images.
In fifth place are flights between Moscow Sheremetyevo International Airport (SVO) and the Turkish Mediterranean resort served by Antalya Airport (ATY). In recent years the popularity of the Turkish Rivera has grown with Russians, and in part, thanks to the weakness of the Turkish Lira, it is an inexpensive vacation destination. More recently, because Turkey does not require Russians to have a visa, many young Russian men have flown there to avoid military mobilization for the special operations in Ukraine.While Aeroflot and Turkish Airlines fly between the city’s daily, the competition heats up during the summer when holiday charter airlines become involved.