List of busiest passenger air routes

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The following are lists of the world's busiest passenger air routes, based on number of passengers, seat capacity, or aircraft movements.

London to New York City is the world’s busiest long-haul route, with over 30 daily flights in each direction for 4.2 million passengers in 2015 between four airports in London (Gatwick, Heathrow, Luton and London City) and two serving New York (JFK and Newark), with competition between British Airways/American Airlines, Virgin Atlantic/Delta Air Lines, United Airlines, Norwegian Air Shuttle, Air India and Kuwait Airways[1]

By number of passengers[edit]

World[edit]

The world's ten busiest air routes by origin-and-destination passenger volume (9 domestic and 1 international):[2] [3] [4]

Rank City 1 City 2 Distance[5] 2015 Passengers
(in millions)[6]
2014 Passengers
(in millions)[7]
2012 Passengers
(in millions)
2011 Passengers
(in millions)
Note
1 South Korea Seoul South Korea Jeju 450 km 11.1 10.5 10.156 9.9 Domestic
2 Japan Tokyo Japan Sapporo 819 km 7.8 7.0 6.943 7.0+ Domestic
3 Japan Tokyo Japan Fukuoka 883 km 7.6 8.3 6.640 6.6+ Domestic
4 Australia Sydney Australia Melbourne 706 km 7.2 7.8 8.211 7.5 Domestic
5 China Beijing China Shanghai 1075 km 6.1 5.8 7.246 6.6+ Domestic
6 Brazil São Paulo Brazil Rio de Janeiro 366 km 7.716 7.6+ Domestic
7 Japan Tokyo Japan Osaka 405 km 6.744 7.5 Domestic
8 Hong Kong Hong Kong Taiwan Taipei 780 km 5.1 5.1 5.513 6.2+ International
9 Japan Tokyo Japan Okinawa 1554 km 4.584 4.1 Domestic
10 Australia Sydney Australia Brisbane 800 km 4.45 Domestic
10 South Africa Johannesburg South Africa Cape Town 1271 km 4.407 4.5 Domestic

Europe[edit]

Busiest air routes inside the EU, Switzerland, Iceland and Norway *[edit]

Data retrieved from Eurostat[8]
Rank Airport 1 Airport 2 2011 2012 2013 2014
1 France Toulouse/Blagnac France Paris/Orly 2,322,456 2,330,224 2,379,100 2,330,949
2 Spain Madrid/Barajas Spain Barcelona/El Prat 3,102,436 2,550,462 2,213,200 2,204,765
3 France Nice/Côte d'Azur France Paris/Orly 2,236,436 2,175,773 2,160,300 2,072,138
4 Norway Oslo Norway Trondheim 1,749,545 1,911,712
5 Italy Catania/Fontanarossa Italy Rome/Fiumicino 1,842,940 1,694,400 1,566,800 1,869,881
6 Germany Berlin/Tegel Germany Munich 1,667,408 1,731,145 1,831,700 1,868,877
7 Norway Oslo Norway Bergen 1,691,887 1,818,852
8 Germany Frankfurt Germany Berlin/Tegel 1,792,655 1,813,063 1,845,600 1,792,006
9 Germany Munich Germany Hamburg 1,717,734 1,719,351 1,713,200 1,756,990
10 United Kingdom London/Heathrow Republic of Ireland Dublin 1,556,111 1,577,649 1,663,900 1,650,394
11 Norway Oslo Norway Stavanger 1,434,043 1,564,631
12 Germany Munich Germany Düsseldorf 1,569,364 1,553,361 1,558,200 1,527,416
13 United Kingdom London/Heathrow Germany Frankfurt 1,459,909 1,482,649 1,488,600 1,506,826
14 Netherlands Amsterdam/Schiphol United Kingdom London/Heathrow 1,406,964 1,429,800 1,443,400 1,486,783
15 Italy Rome/Fiumicino Italy Palermo/Falcone Borsellino 1,499,933 1,360,400 1,264,100 1,475,957
16 United Kingdom London/Heathrow United Kingdom Edinburgh 1,244,400 1,254,800 1,355,700 1,472,648
17 Italy Milan/Linate Italy Rome/Fiumicino 1,524,433 1,378,800 1,416,100 1,453,610
18 Sweden Stockholm Denmark Copenhagen 1,166,000 1,269,200 1,325,700 1,444,429
19 Spain Barcelona/El Prat Spain Palma de Mallorca/Son Sant Joan 1,639,423 1,460,684 1,388,900 1,410,172
20 Greece Athens Greece Thessaloniki 997,200 1,543,993
21 Denmark Copenhagen Norway Oslo 1,395,277
Germany Frankfurt Austria Vienna International Airport 952,400 1,182,200 1,307,900 1,346,948
Germany Frankfurt Germany Hamburg 1,587,593 1,385,867 1,362,400 1,343,857
Sweden Stockholm Norway Oslo 1,342,544
Germany Köln-Bonn Germany Berlin/Tegel 1,026,900 1,088,700 1,288,200 1,321,336
Spain Madrid/Barajas Spain Palma de Mallorca/Son Sant Joan 1,604,853 1,442,410 1,224,700 1,283,404
United Kingdom London/Heathrow Spain Madrid/Barajas 1,093,400 1,197,700 1,264,800 1,274,714
France Paris/Charles De Gaulle United Kingdom London/Heathrow 1,277,330 1,204,533 1,209,900 1,247,831
Greece Athens Cyprus Larnaca 1,209,900 1,247,831

* Figures are only available for EU countries, United Kingdom, Switzerland, Iceland and Norway. Among other European countries, based on airport statistics, no other country than Russia, Ukraine and Turkey can have domestic routes with more than 1 million passengers.

Based on aircraft movements statistics, Istanbul/Atatürk - Izmir/Adnan Menderes is in 2012 possibly busier than Barcelona/El Prat - Madrid/Barajas route and Istanbul/Atatürk - Antalya route is busier than Toulouse/Blagnac - Paris/Orly route.[9]

The St-Petersburg Pulkovo Airport - Moscow (three airports) route was used by 2,965,331 passengers in 2013.[10]

**Madrid-Barcelona had 4,627,000 passengers in 2007, meaning a reduction by 34% in 2010, partly because of a new high-speed railway. The decline has continued from 560 weekly flights in 2010 to 380 in 2012.[9]

Busiest air routes between an airport in Europe (EU, United Kingdom, Switzerland, Iceland and Norway) and outside Europe[edit]

Eurostat[8]
Rank Airport 1 Airport 2 Passengers (2010)
1 United Kingdom London/Heathrow United States New York/John F Kennedy 2,551,276
2 United Kingdom London/Heathrow United Arab Emirates Dubai/Intl 1,974,098
3 United Kingdom London/Heathrow Hong Kong Hong Kong/Chek Lap Kok 1,801,520
4 United Kingdom London/Heathrow Singapore Singapore/Changi 1,507,032
5 United Kingdom London/Heathrow United States Los Angeles/Intl 1,419,144
6 France Paris/Charles De Gaulle United States New York/John F Kennedy 1,190,914
7 France Paris/Charles De Gaulle Canada Montreal/Pierre Elliott Trudeau 1,158,381
8 United Kingdom London/Heathrow United States Chicago/O'Hare 1,138,579
9 France Paris/Orly Guadeloupe Guadeloupe/Pointe-à-Pitre 1,098,322
10 United Kingdom London/Heathrow United States New York/Newark Liberty(NJ) 1,091,804


United States (September 2014 - August 2015)[edit]

Busiest air routes by city pairs within the United States [11]
Rank City 1 City 2 Passengers
(Sep 2014-Aug 2015)
1 Flag of Illinois.svg Chicago, IL (Metro Area) Flag of New York.svg New York City, NY (Metro Area) 4,020,000
2 Flag of California.svg Los Angeles, CA (Metro Area) Flag of California.svg San Francisco, CA (Metro Area) 3,660,000
3 Flag of California.svg Los Angeles, CA (Metro Area) Flag of New York.svg New York City, NY (Metro Area) 3,420,000
4 Flag of Illinois.svg Chicago, IL (Metro Area) Flag of California.svg Los Angeles, CA (Metro Area) 3,010,000
5 Flag of Florida.svg Miami, FL (Metro Area) Flag of New York.svg New York City, NY (Metro Area) 2,750,000
6 Flag of Georgia (U.S. state).svg Atlanta, GA (Metro Area) Flag of Illinois.svg Chicago, IL (Metro Area) 2,720,000
7 Flag of Illinois.svg Chicago, IL (Metro Area) Flag of Minnesota.svg Minneapolis, MN (Metro Area) 2,720,000
8 Flag of Georgia (U.S. state).svg Atlanta, GA (Metro Area) Flag of New York.svg New York City, NY (Metro Area) 2,600,000
9 Flag of Georgia (U.S. state).svg Atlanta, GA (Metro Area) Flag of Florida.svg Orlando, FL (Metro Area) 2,620,000
10 Flag of Illinois.svg Chicago, IL (Metro Area) Flag of Washington, D.C..svg Washington, DC (Metro Area) 2,620,000

Australia (2013)[edit]

Busiest domestic air routes in Australia[12] (all passengers including connecting)
Rank Airport 1 Airport 2 Passengers (2014)
1 Flag of Victoria (Australia).svg Melbourne Flag of New South Wales.svg Sydney 8,322,300
2 Flag of Queensland.svg Brisbane Flag of New South Wales.svg Sydney 4,447,900
3 Flag of Queensland.svg Brisbane Flag of Victoria (Australia).svg Melbourne 3,317,100
4 Flag of Queensland.svg Gold Coast Flag of New South Wales.svg Sydney 2,596,400
5 Flag of South Australia.svg Adelaide Flag of Victoria (Australia).svg Melbourne 2,272,000
6 Flag of Victoria (Australia).svg Melbourne Flag of Western Australia.svg Perth 2,160,700
7 Flag of South Australia.svg Adelaide Flag of New South Wales.svg Sydney 1,813,000
8 Flag of Western Australia.svg Perth Flag of New South Wales.svg Sydney 1,798,900
9 Flag of Queensland.svg Gold Coast Flag of Victoria (Australia).svg Melbourne 1,754,200
10 Flag of Victoria (Australia).svg Melbourne Flag of Tasmania.svg Hobart 1,400,200

By seat capacity[edit]

2015[edit]

The following lists the world's top 10 busiest routes based on total number of seats per year flown in each direction as of August 2015.[13]

Rank Airport 1 Airport 2 Seats
(in millions)
Airlines Serving
1 South Korea Gimpo South Korea Jeju 6.8 Air Busan, Asiana Airlines, T'way Airlines, Eastar Jet, Jeju Air, Jin Air, Korean Air
2 Japan Tokyo-Haneda Japan Sapporo-New Chitose 6.2 Japan Airlines, All Nippon Airways, Air Do, Skymark Airlines
3 Japan Tokyo-Haneda Japan Fukuoka 5.8 All Nippon Airways, Japan Airlines, Skymark Airlines
4 Australia Sydney Australia Melbourne 5.0 Jetstar Airways, Qantas, Tigerair Australia, Virgin Australia
5 Hong Kong Hong Kong Taiwan Taipei 4.2 Cathay Pacific, China Airlines, Dragonair, EVA Air, Hong Kong Airlines
6 India Delhi India Mumbai 3.9 Air India, Air India Regional, GoAir, IndiGo, Jet Airways, SpiceJet, Vistara
7 Japan Tokyo-Haneda Japan Okinawa 3.8 All Nippon Airways, Japan Airlines
8 China Beijing China Shanghai-Hongqiao 3.8 Air China, China Eastern, China Southern, Hainan Airlines, Shanghai Airlines, Juneyao Airlines, Spring Airlines
9 Japan Tokyo-Haneda Japan Osaka 3.7 All Nippon Airways, Japan Airlines, StarFlyer
10 Brazil São Paulo-Congonhas Brazil Rio de Janeiro-Santos Dumont 3.6 Avianca Brazil, Azul Brazilian Airlines, Gol Airlines, TAM Airlines

The following lists the world's top 10 busiest routes based on total number of seat kilometers per year flown as of 2015.[13]

Rank Airport 1 Airport 2 Seat kilometers
(in billions)
1 United Kingdom London-Heathrow United States New York-JFK 10.92
2 United Kingdom London-Heathrow United Arab Emirates Dubai 9.37
3 United Kingdom London-Heathrow Hong Kong Hong Kong 8.75
4 United Kingdom London-Heathrow United States Los Angeles 8.53
5 United Kingdom London-Heathrow Singapore Singapore 8.21
6 United States Los Angeles United States New York-JFK 8.12
7 United States Los Angeles Australia Sydney 7.68
8 Australia Sydney United Arab Emirates Dubai 6.65
9 Taiwan Taipei United States Los Angeles 6.44
10 United States Los Angeles South Korea Seoul 6.43

By aircraft movements[edit]

Busiest by air movements, September 2007

The following is a list of the worlds 25 busiest air routes based on the number of scheduled daily flights in both directions as of December 2013.[14] Note that these statistics do not consider the number of passengers carried. As of December 2013, Rio de Janeiro to São Paulo is the busiest route with 284 daily flights. 23 of the top 25 routes on the list are domestic routes. The busiest international route is Dublin to London (all airports), with 91 daily flights.

Rank City 1 City 2 Flights per day Top Carriers
1 Flag of Brazil.svg Rio de Janeiro Flag of Brazil.svg São Paulo 284 Avianca Brazil, Gol Airlines, TAM Airlines, Azul Airlines
2 Flag of South Korea.svg Jeju Flag of South Korea.svg Seoul 209 Air Busan, Asiana Airlines, Eastar Jet, T'way Airlines, Jeju Air, Jin Air, Korean Air
3 Flag of Australia.svg Melbourne Flag of Australia.svg Sydney 192 Jetstar Airways, Qantas, Virgin Australia, Tigerair Australia
4 Flag of the United States.svg Chicago Flag of the United States.svg New York City 184 American Airlines, Delta Connection, Delta Shuttle, JetBlue Airways, Southwest Airlines, Spirit Airlines, United Airlines, United Express
5 Flag of Japan.svg Fukuoka Flag of Japan.svg Tokyo 136 All Nippon Airways, Air Nippon, Japan Airlines, Skymark Airlines
6 Flag of India.svg Delhi Flag of India.svg Mumbai 140 Air India, Air-India Express, GoAir, IndiGo, Jet Airways, SpiceJet, Air Vistara
7 Flag of Japan.svg Sapporo Flag of Japan.svg Tokyo 128 Air Do, All Nippon Airways, Japan Airlines, Skymark Airlines
8 Flag of the United States.svg Los Angeles Flag of the United States.svg San Francisco 124 American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Delta Connection, Delta Shuttle, Southwest Airlines, United Airlines, United Express, US Airways Express, Virgin America
9 Flag of Indonesia.svg Jakarta Flag of Indonesia.svg Surabaya 123 Airfast Indonesia, Batik Air, Citilink, Garuda Indonesia, Indonesia Air Asia, Lion Air, Nam Air, Sriwijaya Air
10 Flag of South Africa.svg Cape Town Flag of South Africa.svg Johannesburg 116 Comair, Kulula.com, Mango, South African Airways, South African Express
11- Flag of Japan.svg Osaka Flag of Japan.svg Tokyo 115 All Nippon Airways, Japan Airlines, Skymark Airlines
11- Flag of Canada.svg Toronto Flag of Canada.svg Montreal 106 Air Canada, Porter Airlines, Westjet, Air Transat
13 Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Beijing Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Shanghai 100 Air China, China Eastern Airlines, China Southern Airlines, Hainan Airlines, Shanghai Airlines, Spring Airlines, Juneyao Airlines
14 Flag of Australia.svg Brisbane Flag of Australia.svg Sydney 99 Jetstar Airways, Qantas, Virgin Australia, Tiger Airways Australia
15 Flag of the United States.svg Los Angeles Flag of the United States.svg New York City 98 American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, JetBlue Airways, Qantas, United Airlines, Virgin America
16 Flag of Ireland.svg Dublin Flag of the United Kingdom.svg London 91 Aer Lingus, Ryanair, British Airways, CityJet, Aer Lingus Regional, Flybe
17 Flag of Hong Kong.svg Hong Kong Flag of the Republic of China.svg Taipei 83 Cathay Pacific Airways, China Airlines, Dragonair, EVA Air, Hong Kong Airlines
18 Flag of France.svg Paris Flag of France.svg Toulouse 82 Air France, easyJet
19 Flag of Australia.svg Brisbane Flag of Australia.svg Melbourne 72 Alliance Airlines, Jetstar Airways, Qantas, Tigerair Australia, Virgin Australia
19 Flag of the United States.svg Fort Lauderdale Flag of the United States.svg New York City 72 Delta Air Lines, JetBlue Airways, Spirit Airlines
19 Flag of the United States.svg Honolulu Flag of the United States.svg Kahului 72 Hawaiian Airlines, Island Air, Mokulele
19 Flag of India.svg Delhi Flag of India.svg Bangalore 84 AirAsia India, Air India, GoAir, IndiGo, Jet Airways, SpiceJet, Air Vistara
20 Flag of the United States.svg Miami Flag of the United States.svg New York City 70 American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, US Airways
20 Flag of Japan.svg Okinawa Flag of Japan.svg Tokyo 70 All Nippon Airways, Japan Airlines, Skymark Airlines
20 Flag of India.svg Mumbai Flag of India.svg Bangalore 70 Air India, Air-India Express, GoAir, IndiGo, Jet Airways, SpiceJet, Air Vistara
21 Flag of the United States.svg New York City Flag of the United States.svg Orlando 69 American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Delta Connection, JetBlue Airways
22 Flag of the United States.svg Las Vegas Flag of the United States.svg Los Angeles 68 American Airlines, Boutique Air, Delta Air Lines, Delta Connection, Southwest Airlines, Spirit Airlines, United Airlines, United Express, Virgin America

See also[edit]

1 Includes very detailed statistics regarding busiest passenger air routes to/from and within this region

References[edit]

  1. ^ "London to New York market stable at just over four million annual pax". Airline Network News & Analysis. 31 Aug 2016. 
  2. ^ "300 world 'super routes' attract 20% of all air travel, Amadeus reveals in new analysis of global trends". Amadeus. 16 April 2013. 
  3. ^ "Top flights". Daily chart. The Economist. May 14, 2012. Retrieved 2012-05-14. Jeju, on the South Korean island of the same name, is not one of the country's 20 biggest cities. Yet the island's allure as a domestic tourist destination resulted in 9.9m passengers flying between Seoul and Jeju (in either direction) in 2011. This makes it the busiest airline route in the world, according to Amadeus, a company that provides technology to the travel industry. 
  4. ^ url=http://www.iata.org/pressroom/pr/Pages/2015-09-16-01.aspx
  5. ^ "Airport Distance Calculator". 
  6. ^ "60th Edition of IATA World Air Transport Statistics". 
  7. ^ "59th Edition of IATA World Air Transport Statistics". 
  8. ^ a b Retrieved from the "avia_par" dataset available at Eurostat Archived April 10, 2011, at the Wayback Machine.
  9. ^ a b West-to-East traffic shift continues for summer 2012 | EUROCONTROL. Eurocontrol.int. Retrieved on 2013-07-16.
  10. ^ "Airport Indicators". Pulkovo Airport. 
  11. ^ "Bureau of Transportation Statistics". United State Department of Transportation. 
  12. ^ "Australian Domestic Airline Activity 2014" (PDF). Aviation Statistics. Bureau of Transport and Regional Economics. 2014. p. 3. Retrieved 2015-06-12. 
  13. ^ a b "Top 15 routes in relation to capacity, ASKs and frequency revealed". Retrieved 26 August 2015. 
  14. ^ "Airport Movements". QuickTrip. Retrieved 2013-11-09.