The airline industry has changed the world forever, ever since the first flight of the wright brothers on December 17, 1903 took place. In the past people had to spend over 10 months of travelling at sea to arrive at their destination, before the airplanes connected our world. Economically, consumers spend more than 1% of the GNP on air travel. Thanks to the airlines we are worldwide connected. We have come closer together, the migration has been stimulated, it brought the business world to a whole new level. Our view of the world changed forever. In short; The Sky Is The Limit!
Here’s a list of the 8 largest players in aviation at the moment:
American Airlines is currently number 1. AA is the largest when it comes fleet, offering seats and destinations. It was created in 1930 by a merger of 80 smaller airlines. With 256.929.00 seats in 965 planes this company is number 1.
Delta Airlines was founded in 1928 in Monroe and soon moved to Atlanta, which has now become its largest hub. After the bankruptcy of PanAm, Delta Airlines purchased its rights over the Transatlantic flights and experienced enormous growth. Delta Airlines took over Northwest Airlines op April 14, 2008. These changes have made Delta Airlines second on the list.
Southwest Airlines was founded in 1971 and uses a model of low costs and cheap tickets. In 2010, Southwest Airlines took over the competitor AirTran Airways and became a quarter larger after the acquisition. Southwest Airlines has 749 planes with 209.527.000 seats
Walter Varney founded Varney Airlines in 1926. United Airlines eventually came about through various mergers and acquisitions. After world war II, the growth of aviation accelerated. From 1950 the number of passenger kilometers increased fivefold. With 193.982.000 seats on 765 planes, United Airlines is 4th in place.
RyanAir was founded in 1985 and is the largest low-cost airline for flights in Europe. It started out as a regular airline, but soon it focused on low-cost flights in Europe. It copied the success formula of Southwest Airlines from the US. Micheal O’leary ensured that the profit went to this low-cost airline. With 142,541,000 seats on 439 planes, Ryanair is number 5.
China Southern Airlines:
China Southern Airlines was officially founded in 1995. In China, decentralization in 1988 added a large number of airlines, after which 6 of these companies merged into 1 large company. It is currently the largest airline in China. With 131,973,000 seats in 597 planes, this company made it to 6 in this list.
China Eastern Airlines:
This company was also founded in 1988. The rapid growth of this company comes from the financial center of China, Shanghai. In 2017, the company recorded a profit of nearly 1 billion dollars. With 122,917,000 seats with 525 planes, this company is number 7.
EasyJet was founded in 1995 by the Greek businessman Stelios Haji-loannou. He wanted to build a low-cost empire with the name “Easy”, but only the airline and the hotels proved to be a success. With 100,083,000 seats in 317 planes, this company is number 8.