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Germany aviation market: airberlin goes, LCCs grow, Lufthansa thrives

The CEO of visitBerlin, Burkhard Kieker, has said that easyJet is the German capital's "new home carrier". The collapse of airberlin and the subsequent acquisition of much of the bankrupt airline's Berlin capacity by the British low cost airline has changed the aviation landscape in the city.

Moreover, Ryanair, which entered Lufthansa's Frankfurt stronghold in 2017, is now the second largest operator in Germany, behind Lufthansa Group. On both domestic and international markets, LCC seat share is bigger in Germany than at any previous time.

Nevertheless, Lufthansa Group appears to be flourishing in spite of the low cost onslaught. The distributed nature of the German aviation market, with no single dominant airport or city, has been one factor in helping Lufthansa to defend itself.

Another crucial factor has been the successful development of its own (fairly) low cost airline, Eurowings. Not a true low cost carrier judged by its unit cost level, Eurowings has nevertheless been instrumental in helping Lufthansa Group to defend and grow its seat share in Germany.

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