Atlanta is the busiest airport, Delta Air Lines the biggest airline and London Heathrow-New York John F. Kennedy (JFK) the largest international market for the USA in June, Innovata schedules show.
While none of these are big shockers Atlanta has been the busiest airport in the USA since 1998, Delta and United Airlines have duked it out for the top spot since 2010 and London-New York has been a huge market for decades some things do jump out in statistics this month.
Los Angeles-Sydney is the second busiest international route from the USA in terms of available seat kilometres (ASKs). This is likely due to a combination of some of the largest aircraft in the world, including the Airbus A380 operated by Qantas Airways and the Boeing 747-400 operated by United Airlines, on the route and its 12,051km (7,488 miles) distance, which pushes ASKs a measure of both number of passengers and distance above large business markets like Los Angeles-Tokyo Narita.
Delta Air Lines and Virgin Australia also fly between Los Angeles and Sydney, Innovata schedules show.
Honolulu-Los Angeles is likely the busiest domestic route by ASKs because the southern California city remains the traditional gateway to the islands despite being further away than San Francisco. American Airlines, Delta, Hawaiian Airlines and United each serve the market multiple times daily with the smallest aircraft being a 154-seat Boeing 737-800 and the largest a 292-seat Airbus A330-200, according to Innovata.
The introduction of new point-to-point routes to Hawaii in recent years appears to not have eroded Los Angeles position as a gateway. New routes include Alaska Airlines San Diego-Lihue nonstop and Allegiant Airs Fresno-Honolulu flight, which have probably done more to drive increases in traffic to the islands rather than cannibalise traffic connecting through Los Angeles.
The other top markets are the usual suspects trans-continental or near trans-continental routes that in most cases benefit from multiple airlines offering multiple frequencies daily.
JFK to Los Angeles is notably absent from the list despite being flown by five carriers multiple times a day. This may be due to the fact that United flies specially configured Boeing 757-200s with fewer seats than the others in its fleet, a business plan that is being replicated by American, which plans to introduce their own specially configured Airbus A321s later this year.
Delta holds the top spot as the leading domestic carrier ahead of United by a hair in terms of ASKs. The two have been duking it out since United merged with Continental, which was completed last year. However, the pending American-US Airways merger will challenge them for the top spot especially as continued capacity discipline either shrinks their respective ASKs or keeps them flat.
The leading carriers by market in North America again reflect the dominance of the US mainline carriers. United, Delta and American hold the top spots, which is likely due to the combination of their large domestic and international operations with the latter factor pushing US Airways down to sixth because of its smaller international network.
British Airways and Lufthansas placement in the top five is likely due to their large networks into the USA as a result of their trans-Atlantic joint ventures with American and United, respectively.
Atlanta, Chicago OHare and Los Angeles these airports have dominated the top three in the USA for years. Innovata schedules closely mirror those of the Airport Council International for 2012, for example the latter has Denver ahead of JFK, demonstrating that June traffic is a relatively good proxy for annual passenger movements at US airports.