Last week’s lead story on the German domestic market highlighted the competitive nature of some routes following the rise of the German low-cost carrier market. The most fought for route is probably between the old and new capitals of Germany. Four airlines offer a minimum of four daily frequencies between Cologne/Bonn and Berlin.
Lufthansa’s ‘secret’ LCC Germanwings operates to Berlin Schšnefeld (SXF), while Lufthansa, Air Berlin and TUIfly.com all fly to Berlin Tegel (TXL). Average fares (including all taxes and fees) were taken for each day of travel over a two-week period.
|Dates in the green shaded areas are weekend days.|
The results were reasonably predictable with Lufthansa the most expensive, Air Berlin second and Germanwings just beating TUIfly to be the cheapest of the carriers during this period. Fare differentials are highest for last-minute bookings. Fares remain very low right up until about a week before departure. The averaging process disguises the fact that for Lufthansa on 6 August three of the six flights are available from €49 plus taxes, but the peak morning flight is already only available for €274 plus taxes.
TUIfly.com’s taxes varied by total fare paid, but the airline did not provide a breakdown of why this might be. Average weekend fares show no great peaks reflecting that the German domestic market does not really appeal to weekend break enthusiasts.
Overall, for this 463 kilometre flight, average one-way fares for this period were €140 for Lufthansa, €115 for Air Berlin, €83 for TUIfly.com and €78 for Germanwings