Top 30 Asian airports offering 7% more capacity than a year ago; Beijing passes Tokyo Haneda; Jakarta growing fastest

Beijing passes Tokyo Haneda

Beijing passes Tokyo Haneda – and China passes Japan – when these young customers of American Airlines’ new Chicago-Beijing service get to their mid-20s, China is also likely to have become the world’s largest economy.

If further proof were needed that the Asian economies have recovered more quickly from the global recession than those in Europe or the Americas, then look no further than the latest airport capacity data at the region’s busiest airports and compare it with a year ago. This week has identified the top 30 airports in the Asia-Pacific area in terms of weekly scheduled seat capacity and made a year-on-year comparison.

Of the top 30 airports (which are spread across 12 different countries) just six are reporting weekly seat capacity below that of last August. Of the top 20 airports, just one (Tokyo Haneda) is not reporting capacity growth. Overall, across all of the top 30 airports, seat capacity is up 7% versus a year ago.

Chart: Asia-Pacific top 30 airports - Change in scheduled seat capacity: August 10 v August 09

Source: OAG Max Online for w/c 2 August 2010 and w/c 3 August 2009

Since last year, Beijing has stormed past Tokyo Haneda to be the region’s busiest airport, with two other Chinese airports now ranked sixth and seventh in the region.

Jakarta probably not growing quite as fast as it appears

According to OAG data, the fastest growing airport in the region is Jakarta where reported capacity is up a phenomenal 44% compared with just one year ago.

Airline Seats (August 2009) Seats (August 2010) % change
Lion Air 95,766 165,466 +73%
Garuda Indonesia 109,795 131,445 +20%
Batavia n/a 46,116
Sriwijaya Air 39,767 39,767 +0%
Indonesia AirAsia 30,948 28,980 -6%
Mandala Airlines n/a 11,240
Total all airlines 353,423 507,417 +44%
Source: OAG Max Online for w/c 2 August 2010 and w/c 3 August 2009

Closer inspection of the data reveals that neither Batavia nor Mandala Airlines appear to have been providing OAG with schedule data last year so the growth is overstated. However, the fact that Lion Air, now the busiest carrier at the airport, has increased capacity by 73% is still extremely impressive.


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