6. Air China
12. Air Canada
13. Air France
16. United Express
19. Hainan Airlines
20. Korean Air
Source: Euromonitor from trade sources/national statistics
Note: Historic regional/global values are the aggregation of local currency country data at current prices converted into USD using y-o-y exchange rates
Note: Ranking determined using 2017 data for retail value market share percentage
These are the 20 airline brands that dominate the global airlines market. While scheduled airline brands continue to take the top spots in the list, low cost carriers continue to disrupt air travel in 2017. This is a trend we expect to see continue into the future as the a la carte pricing model embraces the appeal of affordability with the personalisation megatrend, allowing travelers to pick and choose additional product offerings and services based on their budget.
Within the low cost airline segment, there are carriers which break the status quo and find their own market niche. Southwest, for example, has never charged baggage fees despite being regarded as a budget operator. Southwest recorded US$2.8 billion in ancillary revenue in 2015, up from US$1.8 billion in 2014. In 2015, Southwest became the largest global generator of ancillary revenues among low cost airlines, leaving European Ryanair behind. These results are even more impressive given the fact that the airline does not charge for the first two checked bags.
Aside from being founded on a low fare offer, Southwest seeks to stand out from the competition with a strong focus on customer service. Indeed, Southwest Airlines claims that it consistently has the highest customer satisfaction and the best on time performance of all the major US airlines. The question that stands is can low-cost long haul players emulate the same approach and maintain profitability?
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