Jeju’s weekly seats now ABOVE pre-coronavirus levels

Jeju’s weekly seats now ABOVE pre-coronavirus levels, for one reason

Fly Gangwon began a four-daily Jeju – Yangyang service this year, helping Jeju’s domestic seats to rebound on a weekly basis.

Miraculously, Jeju’s seats are now above the level seen before coronavirus.

In the week starting 19 August 2020, the South Korean island’s total seats amounted to 669,480, OAG Schedules data shows.

This is up by 4% or almost 26,000 weekly seats over the pre-coronavirus period at the start of January.

Domestic demand, however, has unsurprisingly not caught up, reflected in both seat load factors and fares.

There’s one reason for this supply bounce back: Jeju’s domestic market.  

The week starting 19 August is the third consecutive week that Jeju’s capacity surpassed all weekly seats in January.

Unfortunately, the recent spike in infections in South Korea may mean that tough restrictions are imposed again, therefore potentially somewhat backtracking on this development.

Jeju’s weekly seats now ABOVE pre-coronavirus levels, for one reason

Source: OAG Schedules Analyser.

All about the domestic market

It is typically domestic markets that are recovering quicker than international, which is clearly the case with Jeju. 

Ryanair’s head of route development suggested this about Europe too in our recent webinar.

Jeju’s domestic seats are up by 11% in the current week versus the start of January, equivalent to an additional 73,000 weekly seats.  The number of operational flights via Flightradar24 fits with this.

However, the airport’s international seats – which are primarily to China – are down by 68% the same period, a loss of 47,000 in a week.  

The island resort’s international capacity is at its highest in nearly six months, but with a very long way to go. 

Because of this imbalanced redevelopment, Jeju’s domestic seats now account for 97% of the airport’s total, up from around 90% at the start of the year.

Jeju’s weekly seats now ABOVE pre-coronavirus levels, for one reason

Jeju’s domestic route network. Source: OAG Mapper.

Current 34-week period compares favourably to last year…

Jeju’s total seats in the current week (669,480) are down by less than 1% versus the same week last year. 

In the grand scheme of things, this is striking.

This performance is entirely due to the island’s buoyant domestic capacity, which is up by almost 7% versus the year-ago week. 

International capacity, meanwhile, is down by almost 70% YOY.  Clearly, Jeju’s position would be far worse if it were far more international-focused.

Jeju’s weekly seats now ABOVE pre-coronavirus levels, for one reason

Source: OAG Schedules Analyser.

… but a slightly different picture if all 34 weeks are accumulated

Obviously, Jeju’s amassed seats in this 34-week period shows a different picture.

While a total of 18.9 million seats were offered in this period this year, this is down by 10% or 2.2 million YOY.

Jeju’s domestic market had 6% or 1.15 million fewer seats in these 34 weeks.

On an absolute and accumulative basis, this was almost identical to that experienced by its international network.

Jeju’s weekly seats now ABOVE pre-coronavirus levels, for one reason

Source: OAG Schedules Analyser.

Seoul Gimpo has a 60% share of domestic seats

Jeju has 13 domestic routes this year. 

Despite coronavirus, various new routes have been added this year, including:

  • T’way from Jeju to Cheongju
  • Jin Air to Degau, Ulsan, and Pohang 
  • Jeju Air to Yeosu
  • Fly Gongwon to Yangyang

Fly Gongwon’s Jeju – Yangyang, at four-daily using B737-800s, accounts for this route’s growth of nearly 500% in the 34 weeks this year, albeit from an extremely low base. 

Jeju’s domestic market naturally revolves around Seoul Gimpo, with this route accounting for six in ten of the airport’s domestic seats.  It is the world’s largest domestic route by total seat capacity.

In the current week, it is served 878 times each way, for an average daily frequency of 125.

Asiana is the market leader, typically with around 29 daily flights.  Tomorrow, 17 of its 29 flights are by B767-300s and A330-300s.

Jeju to/from… Seats (two ways) in the 34 weeks in 2019 And in the 34 weeks in 2020 % change YOY
Seoul Gimpo 11,027,515 10,758,993 -2%
Busan 2,852,729 2,299,692 -19%
Cheongju 1,726,386 1,654,214 -4%
Gwangju 1,290,109 1,246,127 -3%
Daegu 1,260,465 1,184,495 -6%
Yeosu 247,482 250,606 +1%
Ulsan 243,298 236,356 -3%
Gunsan 213,198 140,492 -34%
Muan 152,241 32,604 -79%
Won-ju 92,174 19,360 -79%
Jinju 59,854 16,256 -73%
Yangyang 28,200 165,522 +487%
Pohang 0 38,220
Source: OAG Schedules Analyser.

 


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