San Francisco International Airport
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- IATA Code
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- San Francisco
- United States of America
- Domestic | International
- Airport Type
- 3618m x 61m
3231m x 61m
2636m x 61m
2286m x 61m
- Airlines currently operating to this airport with scheduled services
- Aer Lingus
Air New Zealand
All Nippon Airways
China Eastern Airlines
China Southern Airlines
Delta Air Lines
KLM Royal Dutch Airlines
Nippon Cargo Airlines
Virgin Atlantic Airways
- Airlines currently operating to this airport via codeshare
- Aerolineas Argentinas
Air Europa Lineas Aereas
Air Tahiti Nui
LOT Polish Airlines
Pakistan International Airlines
Royal Air Maroc
South African Airways
San Francisco International Airport is the major international gateway to San Francisco, and the largest airport serving in California's Bay Area. Hosting domestic, regional and international passenger and cargo services for over 30 airlines, the airport is a major hub for United Airlines and Virgin America.
Location of San Francisco International Airport, United States of America
Ground Handlers and Cargo Handlers servicing San Francisco International Airport
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55 total articles
China Airlines has sat out on long haul growth over the last decade and is now looking to reinvigorate its position, making wins against local rival EVA Air, which has quietly but spectacularly grown. EVA, however, now faces uncertainty with new owners that may favour conservative expansion, which could benefit China Airlines. But China Airlines remains in a difficult position, one where it is under too much influence from its government owners, has an undefined vision, and lacks having aircraft on order.
China Airlines has received four A350s, with another 10 due by the end of 2018. China Airlines will have twice as many A350 flights to North America as to Europe – the market it originally envisaged for the A350.
European A350 growth could expand as China Airlines plans to resume London in Jun-2017. China Airlines could also consider a new service to Paris. Europe risks long term overcapacity, however, and this is not a strong market for Taiwan. Growth options are limited to North America, where China Airlines needs longer range aircraft but does not have any more 777-300ERs on order.
Delta Air Lines is rekindling its partnership with Korean Air. Delta has previously used heavy-handed tactics – cutting off codeshares, nearly eliminating reciprocal frequent flyer benefits otherwise enshrined in their SkyTeam alliances – to bully Korean Air into a JV. The attraction to Delta is a JV partner in Asia, which American and United have long enjoyed.
Korean Air, until recently, has failed to see the benefits of a partnership with Delta, which has a smaller trans-Pacific footprint. Although Korean Air felt the damage from all but losing its North American partner, what Delta needed to give Korean Air was time. It has helped that Delta is no longer pursuing a hub in Tokyo – a rival to Korean Air and Seoul.
A deeper Delta-Korean Air partnership, as hinted at by Delta management in Dec-2016, starts with both feeling competitive trans-Pacific pressure but jointly holding a position of strength, with a JV slightly smaller than United-ANA's, but much larger than American-JAL. Korean Air brings wider coverage to Southeast Asia, as well as North American gateways.
After rapid growth in the market between North America and Australia/New Zealand, an airline has finally blinked: United Airlines will change its sole New Zealand service, San Francisco-Auckland, to only operate seasonally. United will rely on its JV partner Air New Zealand.
Auckland is less important for United than for American Airlines and its codeshare (but not JV) partner Qantas. Qantas has exited the Auckland-Los Angeles market, so American's entry to New Zealand gives it two nonstops from both Australia and New Zealand, enhancing presence across the region and making it easier to bring American visitors to both Australia and New Zealand.
United's adjustment to a seasonal service will mean that the New Zealand-North America (excluding Hawaii) market will expand by a reduced 10% instead of 17%. Even with this downward change there will be 17% more capacity than in the previous record year of 2008.
After complaints about airlines amassing power through joint ventures to the detriment of consumers, the US DOT appears to be exerting greater and more conservative scrutiny on partnerships. DOT has rejected a proposed JV between American Airlines and Qantas. After DOT declined their request for a much longer response time American and Qantas withdrew their application, submitted in Jun-2015.
At a top level the JV does seem to raise concern: combined, Qantas and American would hold 59% of the US-Australia market. Yet almost all of that – 53% – is from Qantas; American adds only 6ppt.
DOT rejects the notion that such larger market share can possibly be in the interest of consumers. Yet it appears to overlook the benefit American might bring in exchange for incremental market share gains. Nor is it clear if this combination is more anti-competitive than some JVs where two airlines, each with a small- or medium-sized position, combine and become multiples larger. Qantas' 53% market share was earned through quality and smart loyalty programme development while competitors lagged.
Qantas will continue growth in North America, its most successful international market, but American Airlines' growth is uncertain and it may re-evaluate a supposedly planned Los Angeles-Melbourne 787 service.
Philippine Airlines (PAL) is seeking to improve its position in the North American market by boosting capacity and partnering with a US airline. PAL has been able to increase its presence in the US since the FAA upgraded the Philippines to a Category 1 safety rating in 2014, enabling PAL to increase capacity, launch new routes and pursue codeshares with US airlines.
PAL launched services from Cebu to Los Angeles in Mar-2016 and in the coming weeks is planning to add capacity on Manila-Los Angeles – one of its largest and most profitable international routes – using a newly delivered 777-300ER. PAL may also add capacity to San Francisco in 2017 and is planning to use its new A350-900 fleet to launch nonstop flights to New York, and potentially Chicago, in 2018.
PAL also has begun searching for a US partner to help it feed an expanded US operation. Securing a US partner is key to supporting further growth and further boosting its share of the Philippines-US market as competition intensifies.
Delta-Korean Air joint venture creates trans-Pacific's second largest bloc. Cathay, EVA under threat
The unprecedented aviation market growth between Asia and North America is forcing airlines to re-evaluate their core strategy and reassess who is a competitor and who could be a partner. It seems probable that Delta Air Lines and Korean Air will form a joint venture, potentially making them the second largest trans-Pacific bloc.
The next two largest airlines without a deep partnership, EVA Air and Cathay Pacific, are having to confront significant change, without the support of partners. Delta-Korean Air brings United-ANA its closest rival yet, while the American-JAL JV – already smaller – needs bulking up.
Korean Air brings Delta a wider network in Asia than ANA or JAL offer to their respective JV partners, United and American. A Korean Air-Delta JV could result in more destinations and flights being added once they are able to sell jointly.