World’s Busiest International Passenger Routes Revealed

air passenger routes

As 275 airlines gather in Barcelona over the coming days for World Routes 2017, including the world’s top ten carriers by capacity, Routesonline can reveal the 20 busiest non-stop international passenger routes on earth.

With an average of 80 flights per day – that’s one every 18 minutes – Hong Kong (HKG) – Taipei Taiwan Taoyuan (TPE) was the busiest during July 2017, the research has found.

A total of 451,801 passengers travelled the 802km between the densely-populated autonomous territory of Hong Kong and Taipei, the capital of Taiwan. The July total was 4.6 percent higher than June and 129,313 more passengers than the second busiest international route on earth, Jakarta Soekarno-Hatta (CGK) – Singapore Changi (SIN).

Cathay Pacific Airways had the most capacity on the route with 309,439 available seats, followed by China Airlines with 182,986. Other operators to fly HKG-TPE are EVA Airways, Hong Kong Airlines and Cathay Dragon.

As with the busiest overall routes in the world, services in the Asia Pacific region dominated the rankings with the entire top ten taken up by routes in Asia, and just two from outside the region making the top 20. Perhaps surprisingly, neither of these routes were in North or South America.

At 12 was Moscow Domodedovo (DME) – Simferopol (SIP), linking Russia’s capital city with Crimea, while at 16th was the leisure route of Duesseldorf (DUS) – Palma de Mallorca (PMI), linking German’s seventh most populous city with the holiday island of Mallorca.

The busiest international routes were calculated by using OAG to find the top 100 routes in the world by capacity in July 2017 and then ranking them by passenger statistics on Sabre.

The most expensive route in the top 20 was Hong Kong (HKG) – Beijing Capital (PEK) – operated by Cathay Dragon, Air China, Cathay Pacific, China Southern Airlines and Hong Kong Airlines – with an average base fare of $333.08. The cheapest was Palma de Mallorca (PMI) – Duesseldorf (DUS), operated by a string of low-cost carrers including NIKI, Eurowings and Germania.

The data:

July 2017June 2017
RankRouteAvailable capacityPassengersBase fare ($)PassengersBase fare ($)Distance (km)
1Hong Kong (HKG) – Taipei Taiwan Taoyuan (TPE)70189245180194.2543212892.57802
2Jakarta Soekarno-Hatta (CGK) – Singapore Changi (SIN)482226322488127.85295880123.09896
3Kuala Lumpur (KUL) – Singapore Changi (SIN)46875626939577.9724193174.78296
4Seoul Incheon (ICN) – Osaka Kansai (KIX)328374233920109.96211902131.87872
5Hong Kong (HKG) – Shanghai Pudong (PVG)405424225888220.07233561200.51247
6Taipei Taiwan Taoyuan (TPE) – Osaka Kansai (KIX)269647200131208.60198981194.51714
7Seoul Incheon (ICN) – Hong Kong (HKG)372471197935160.04200385166.082080
8Bangkok Suvarnabhumi (BKK) – Hong Kong (HKG)405956197313162.25191738140.891694
9Taipei Taiwan Taoyuan (TPE) – Tokyo Narita (NRT)251584197175238.74183917253.92193
10Kuala Lumpur (KUL) – Jakarta Soekarno-Hatta (CGK)31229619598862.9316651564.781142
11Hong Kong (HKG) – Singapore Changi (SIN)356207187128242.15171961241.442587
12Moscow Domodedovo (DME) – Simferopol (SIP)28436218623986.1719445981.031188
13Singapore Changi (SIN) – Bangkok Suvarnabhumi (BKK)310201173660133.06181337142.171431
14Hong Kong (HKG) – Beijing Capital (PEK)306205169666333.08176880344.822011
15Seoul Gimpo (GMP) – Tokyo Intl (Haneda)191994166402234.23164768239.391194
16Palma de Mallorca (PMI) – Duesseldorf (DUS)19191916575844.9515706348.451362
17Seoul Incheon (ICN) – Bangkok Suvarnabhumi (BKK)240393163274251.15150651243.73681
18Osaka Kansai International (KIX) – Hong Kong (HKG)255378163154247.89145716242.622484
19Hong Kong (HKG) – Manila Ninoy Aquino (MNL)30733516264793.14143990101.981145
20Manila Ninoy Aquino (MNL) – Singapore Changi (SIN)23



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