London – Bucharest 1.5 million seats; 9% CAGR since 2014
Bucharest is one of 11 Romanian cities served from London. This year, 1.5 million total seats are offered from London to Bucharest. This is up from <900,000 in 2014 – a CAGR of 9.3%. In December 2019, an average of 12 daily flights are operated between the two capitals.
London – Romania (excl. Bucharest) now bigger than London – Bucharest
While London – Bucharest is fast-growing, it has increasingly taken a backseat to broader London – Romania. Excluding the Romanian capital, this has grown two-and-a-half times faster with a CAGR of 23%. Bucharest remains by far the single-largest market.
Bucharest now accounts for less than half of London – Romania capacity, down almost YOY from two-thirds in 2014.
Five London airports to Bucharest
600,000+ seats were added since 2014. Of these, half were at Luton, one-quarter at Gatwick and one-fifth at Stansted. Ryanair was responsible at Stansted and Wizz Air at Gatwick. At Luton, Blue Air added 40% of the seats, the rest by Wizz Air.
Five airlines operate London – Bucharest
Wizz Air has grown its seat share from 34% in 2014 to 50% in 2019. It now serves Bucharest from three London airports. It supplemented its 20-weekly Luton service (served higher during the summer) with a six-weekly to Gatwick and its new five-weekly operation to Southend.
Romanian airline Blue Air bullishly added a third more seats to Luton before right-sizing amid Wizz Air’s response. easyJet ended Gatwick – Bucharest in 2015. This was no surprise given 70% of the market is for VFR reasons and easyJet tends to perform less effectively in very VFR-heavy markets. Above all, the main losers have been BA and TAROM, whose shares have declined notably. While over half of London – Bucharest frequencies are now by the A321, as a result of Wizz Air, TAROM’s capacity is almost exactly the same in 2019 as in 2014 from using the Airbus A318.