Gulf carriers witness ‘exponential’ traffic growth between Europe and Asia

The ‘big three’ Gulf carriers – Emirates, Etihad and Qatar Airways – experienced a surge in first and business class traffic on routes between Europe and Asia Pacific last year, new data has revealed.

According to figures released by Amadeus, first class passenger volumes for the three Gulf carriers on the top 10 routes between Europe and Asia Pacific jumped 67%, while business class traffic increased by 47%.

Doha, Abu Dhabi and Dubai airports registered a combined 8% increase in transit traffic between Europe and Asia Pacific in 2015, across all travel classes.

The data also revealed the strength of Bangkok as a destination; five of the top 10 routes from Europe to Asia Pacific in 2015, as recorded by Amadeus, terminated in the Thai capital. The top two were Frankfurt-Bangkok and London-Bangkok, with Munich-Bangkok seventh, Amsterdam-Bangkok ninth and Paris-Bangkok 10th.

India was also a strong market, with London-Delhi and London-Mumbai the third and fourth most popular routes respectively. Paris-Tokyo (fifth), Paris-Seoul (sixth) and London-Hong Kong (eighth) completed the top 10.

Amadeus generated 505 million air bookings in 2015, boarding a total of 747.3m passengers. This gives it a 42.5% share of the total air passenger bookings made via the GDS.

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