Korea domestic: Asiana and Korean Air grow, but LCCs still dominate

Despite Korea’s compact geography and proliferation of affordable high-speed train services, the country’s domestic market continues to grow and reached 65 million passengers in 2017, mostly because of flights to the popular island of Jeju.

Yet growth is slowing, mostly due to slot shortages in Seoul, Busan and Jeju. Korean Air and Asiana are growing, with Asiana reaching record domestic output in recent years, but LCCs still fly 57% of the domestic market.

More airlines may be on the way: Korea’s aviation sector has heavily debated the need for new entrants. However, since Korea’s competitive authority has announced that it will weigh on the matter the outlook looks bright for new entrants, since the competitive authority would likely favour the contender best suited to survive, versus Korea’s aviation industry wanting to preserve the status quo.

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