- Skymark Airlines
The Japanese airline has successfully attacked the duopoly of Japan Air Lines and All Nippon Airways in the lucrative Japanese domestic market since 1998. With over 30 aircraft, 15 destinations in Japan are conveniently connected. In the meantime, however, Skymark Airlines has financial problems.
- Tiger Airways
The low-cost airline from Singapore specializes in connecting destinations in Southeast Asia and to Australia, China, India, Japan and South Korea at low cost. It was founded in 2003 and flies with 19 Airbus A320s. Tiger Airways quickly became profitable.
SpiceJet is number three in the huge and rapidly growing domestic flight market in India. The airline was founded in 2004 by entrepreneur Kalanithi Maran. A fleet of 51 aircraft serves 54 destinations across India. With clever marketing campaigns such as 1 million seats for the equivalent of EUR 25 each, SpiceJet became very popular in India.
- Air Arabia
Air Arabia is one of the most successful low-cost airlines in the Middle East in terms of passenger numbers. Founded in 2003, the airline offers flights to 81 destinations in Europe, Africa, India and Asia and of course the Middle East. The airline is based on Sharjah to keep costs down, as the nearby Dubai airport would result in much higher costs.
- WestJet Airlines
WestJet was the answer to Air Canada’s near monopoly on domestic flights in Canada. It now carries almost as many passengers as its big competitor, the maple leaf, and is the ninth largest airline in North America, although WestJet Airlines was only founded in 1996. The fleet now comprises 101 aircraft and, in addition to Canada, flies to destinations in the USA, Central America, Mexico and the Caribbean.
In Asia, AirAsia from Malaysia was the pioneer of all low-cost airlines. The airline has been growing at double-digit rates for years and now offers flights to over 400 destinations in Southeast Asia. It has subsidiaries in numerous countries to circumvent trade restrictions, such as AirAsia X, Thai AirAsia, AirAsia Japan, AirAsia Philippines and Indonesian AirAsia. Long-haul connections to Europe and Australia are also in the works. AirAsia’s motto is “Now everyone can fly”!
- JetBlue Airways
The airline from New York in the United States is one of the most popular low-cost airlines. It was founded in 1999 and offers connections to 75 destinations in the USA, the Caribbean and South America with 172 Airbus aircraft. Even after September 11, 2001, JetBlue remained profitable.
Ryanair is from Ireland, but is now active across Europe with a fleet of over 300 Boeing 737s. It flies to 160 destinations and has a very famous, albeit controversial, chairman of the board, Michael O’Leary. With novel and absurd cost-saving ideas such as pay toilets or standing seats on the plane, Ryanair is always successful in bringing up discussions.
Easyjet is one of the leading low-cost airlines in Europe. With 190 aircraft connections are offered to over 130 destinations. Lately, Easyjet has also successfully managed to get business people on board their Airbuses. Otherwise, the British are less controversial than Ryanair and therefore more popular with passengers and the press.
- Southwest Airlines
Soutwest Airlines is the model and role model of every other low-cost airline. The budget flight model has been in operation since 1969 and today Soutwest is the largest airline in the US domestic market by passengers. A fleet of 586 Boeing planes flies to 78 destinations in the USA. Southwest Airlines operates 3,400 flights every day!
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