American Airlines now the world's busiest carrier
American Airlines was the world's most active airline for the week beginning 29-Mar-2021, according to CAPA's database, based on OAG filings. American leads in both domestic and international seats flown; of its international seats, over three quarters are to Latin America and the Caribbean.
America's airlines have surged back into top positions in recent weeks, as the US domestic market has opened up, with over one million passengers daily most days.
Each of the three largest US carriers, American Airlines, Delta Air Lines and Southwest Airlines are offering over 3 million seats for the week, the majority of them in the domestic market. All of the highest ranking airlines have substantial domestic routes, as international continues to languish.
Seven US airlines made the top 20 busiest, and, as a sign of things to come, eight Chinese airlines appeared in the 20.
The first continental European airline for seat numbers in this week was Air France, appearing at #33 (Turkish Airlines placed #9). Aside from Air France, the only other Europeans to make the top 50 were Lufthansa and KLM.
American carriers regain the ascendancy as the domestic market opens up
For the week beginning 29-Mar-2021, American Airlines heads the world Top 20 in systemwide seat numbers scheduled.
Five of the top 10 were US carriers and three were Chinese, China Southern Airlines, China Eastern Airlines and Air China. The other two places were occupied by Turkish Airlines (9th) and Indian LCC IndiGo (8th).
Predictably, all of the top ranking airlines have substantial domestic markets.
Top 20 system (domestic and international) seats flown w/b 29-Mar-2021
American again heads the world in terms of international seat numbers, but the profile of airlines in the top ranks changes considerably when only international seats are accounted.
(But Qatar remains the largest globally, measured by available freight capacity (AFTKs/AFTMs). See for example: Cargo demand & supply: Qatar Airways reinforces global #1 position)
Top 20 international seats flown w/b 29-Mar-2021
American's international seat numbers focus on short/medium haul routes to the south
American Airlines international seats w/b 29-Mar-2021
But American in particular is moving fast - perhaps prematurely - to return to the North Atlantic
As American ramps up its North Atlantic frequencies, the impact of these longer haul routes can quickly be seen when the shares are shown in ASKs (or ASMs), with a much larger proportion of seats kilometres flown (22.5%), compared with seats flown (8.9%) in the previous graph.
American Airlines seat kilometres w/b 29-Mar-2021