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The world's largest airlines can be defined in several ways. American Airlines Group is the largest by its fleet size, revenue, passengers carried and revenue passenger mile. Delta Air Lines is the largest by assets value and market capitalization, while Southwest Airlines leads by profit. Lufthansa Group is the largest by number of employees, FedEx Express by freight tonne-kilometers, Turkish Airlines by number of countries served and UPS Airlines by number of destinations served (or United Airlines when excluding freight-only carriers).

By revenueEdit

 
American Airlines is the largest by fleet size, revenue, passengers carried and RPK
 
Lufthansa is the largest by number of employees
Forbes' World's Biggest Public Companies[1]
Rank Airline Country Revenue Profit Assets Market
cap.
Employees
(US$ billions)
1 American Airlines Group   United States 43.0 1.9 53.3 19.9 126,600
2 Delta Air Lines   United States 42.1 3.5 54.1 37.1 87,000
3 Lufthansa   Germany 41.5 2.8 47.1 14.1 129,424
4 United Airlines   United States 38.3 2.2 44.0 18.6 89,800
5 Air France–KLM   France/  Netherlands 29.1 -0.3 29.3 3.8 83,522
6 IAG   Ireland/  Spain/  UK 26.0 2.3 32.7 19.4 63,994
7 Southwest Airlines   United States 21.2 3.6 25.5 30.4 56,100
8 China Southern Airlines   China 19.7 1.0 35.0 14.6 96,234
9 All Nippon Airways   Japan 17.8 1.3 24.1 12.8 33,719
10 China Eastern Airlines   China 15.7 0.8 36.2 15.5 75,277

Note that Emirates is a state-owned company and is thus not included in this list of public companies. Its 2014-2015 revenue was DH 88.819 billion (US$24.2 billion), profit DH 4.555 billion (US$1.24 billion), and assets DH 111.362 billion (US$30.34 billion) with 56,725 employees.

By passengers carriedEdit

Millions of passengers carried
Rank Airline Country 2017[2] 2016[3] 2015[4] 2014[5] 2013[6] 2012[7] 2011[8]
1 American Airlines Group   United States 199.6 198.7 146.53 87.83 86.823 86.335 86.042
2 Delta Air Lines   United States 186.4 183.7 138.842 129.433 120.636 116.726 113.731
3 Southwest Airlines   United States 157.8 151.8 144.575 129.087 115.323 112.234 110.587
4 United Airlines   United States 148.1 143.2 95.384 90.439 90.161 92.619 50.473
5 Ryanair   Ireland 130.3 119.8 101.401 86.370 81.395 79.649 76.422
6 Lufthansa Group   Germany 130.0 62.4 59.850 63.273 64.393 63.012
7 China Southern Airlines   China 126.3 84.9 109.301 100.683 91.504 86.277 80.545
8 China Eastern Airlines   China 110.8 80.9 75.139 66.174 62.653 79.611
9 IAG   Spain/  UK 104.8
10 Air China Group   China 101.6

The IATA reports numbers for individual air operator's certificates and groups of multiple airlines can report larger numbers.

By scheduled passenger-kilometers flown (millions)Edit

Airline holding groups
Rank Group Country 2017[2]
1 American Airlines Group   United States 364,191
2 Delta Air Lines   United States 350,299
3 United Airlines Holdings   United States 347,963
4 The Emirates Group   United Arab Emirates 292,221
5 Lufthansa Group   Germany 261,156
6 International Airlines Group   Spain/  United Kingdom 252,819
7 Air France–KLM   France/  Netherlands 248,476
8 China Southern Airlines   China 230,697
9 Southwest Airlines   United States 207,802
10 Air China   China 201,090
Individual airlines
Rank Airline Country 2018
[citation needed]
2016[9] 2015[10] 2014[11] 2013[12] 2012[13] 2011[14]
1 American Airlines   United States 330,577 320,044 320,813 208,046 206,551 203,336 203,485
2 Delta Air Lines   United States 330,034 308,088 302,512 290,862 277,560 271,567 269,724
3 United Airlines   United States 329,562 299,080 294,970 287,547 286,802 288,282 160,270
4 Emirates   United Arab Emirates 302,298 270,797 251,190 230,855 209,377 180,880 153,264
5 Southwest Airlines   United States 214,561 200,848 189,097 162,445 145,124 137,708 134,918
6 China Southern Airlines   China 200,239 205,720 189,186 166,074 147,841 135,021 121,944
7 Ryanair   Ireland 170,900 142,740 125,194
8 China Eastern Airlines   China 166,282 138,042
9 Air China   China 161,199 -
10 Lufthansa   Germany 158,986 149,702 145,904 143,403 144,236 142,512 140,972
British Airways   United Kingdom 144,028 140,780 137,204 130,129 124,318 116,864

By scheduled freight ton-kilometers (millions)Edit

 
FedEx Express is the largest by freight tonne-kilometers
Rank Airline Country 2018
[citation needed]
2017
[citation needed]
2016[9] 2015[10] 2014[15] 2013[16] 2012[17] 2011[18]
1 FedEx Express   United States 17,499 16,851 15,712 15,799 16,020 16,127 16,108 15,939
2 Emirates SkyCargo   United Arab Emirates 12,713 12,715 12,270 12,157 11,240 10,459 9,319 8,132
3 Qatar Airways Cargo   Qatar 12,695 10,999 9,221 7,660 5,997 4,972
4 UPS Airlines   United States 12,459 11,940 11,264 10,807 10,936 10,584 10,416 10,566
5 Cathay Pacific Cargo   Hong Kong 11,284 10,772 9,947 9,935 9,464 8,241 8,433 9,109
6 Korean Air Cargo   South Korea 7,839 8,015 7,666 7,761 8,079 7,666 8,144 8,974
7 Lufthansa Cargo   Germany 7,394 7,317 7,384 6,888 7,054 7,218 7,175 7,674
8 Cargolux   Luxembourg 7,322 7,322 6,878 6,309 5,753 5,225
9 Air China Cargo   China 7,051 6,701 6,089 5,718
10 China Southern Airlines   China 6,597
Singapore Airlines Cargo   Singapore 6,592 6,345 6,083 6,019 6,240 6,694 7,118

By fleet sizeEdit

 
Delta Air Lines is the largest by assets value and market capitalization
May 23, 2019[19]
Rank Airline Country Fleet Widebody Narrowbody Regional aircraft
1 American Airlines   United States 957 155 782 20
2 Delta Air Lines   United States 880 151 729
3 United Airlines   United States 777 191 586
4 Southwest Airlines   United States 753 753
5 China Southern Airlines   China 603 97 463 19
6 China Eastern Airlines   China 607 91 513 3
7 SkyWest   United States 486 486
8 Ryanair   Ireland 456 456
9 Air China   China 439 130 306
10 FedEx Express   United States 378 267 111
11 Lufthansa   Germany 360 115 198 47
12 Turkish Airlines   Turkey 332 107 225

By number of countries servedEdit

 
Turkish Airlines is the largest airline by number of countries served.
Rank Airline Country Countries served
(S1 2019)[20]
[clarification needed]
1 Turkish Airlines   Turkey 121
2 Air France   France 91
3 British Airways   United Kingdom 82
4 Ethiopian Airlines   Ethiopia 81
5 Emirates   United Arab Emirates 78
6 Qatar Airways   Qatar 78
7 Lufthansa   Germany 75
8 KLM   Netherlands 67
9 American Airlines   United States 62
United Airlines   United States 62
10 Aeroflot   Russia 58

By number of routesEdit

Rank Airline Country Routes served
(S1 2019)[20]
1 Ryanair   Ireland 1,831
2 American Airlines   United States 1,106
3 United Airlines   United States 950
4 easyJet   United Kingdom 945
5 Delta Air Lines   United States 939
6 Southwest Airlines   United States 754
7 China Southern   China 667
7 China Eastern   China 648
8 Wizz Air   Hungary 615
9 Air China   China 470
10 TUI Airways   United Kingdom 470

By number of destinationsEdit

 
UPS Airlines serves the most destinations
Largest airlines by number of destinations served[21]
Rank Airline Country Destinations
(Dec. 2017)
1 UPS Airlines   United States 727
2 FedEx Express   United States 375
3 United Airlines   United States 373
4 American Airlines   United States 350
5 Delta Air Lines   United States 320
6 Turkish Airlines   Turkey 302
7 Lufthansa   Germany 274
8 China Eastern Airlines   China 217
9 Air France   France 204
10 Air China   China 201

By brand valueEdit

Largest airlines by brand value (US$ billions)[22]
Rank Airline Country $bn
1 American Airlines   United States 9.094
2 Delta Air Lines   United States 8.712
3 United Airlines   United States 7.027
4 Emirates Airlines   United Arab Emirates 5.336
5 Southwest Airlines   United States 5.298
6 China Southern Airlines   China 4.063
7 China Eastern Airlines   China 3.81
8 British Airways   United Kingdom 3.484
9 Air China   China 3.433
10 Lufthansa   Germany 2.914

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "The World's Largest Public Companies". Forbes. 2018.
  2. ^ a b "World Airline Rankings". Flight Global. 2018.
  3. ^ "World Airline Rankings". Flight Global. 2017.
  4. ^ "Global Air Traffic & Top Airlines 2016 (IATA)". IMM International. 28 June 2016.
  5. ^ "Scheduled Passengers Carried". World Air Transport Statistics 59th Edition. IATA. Archived from the original on June 18, 2015. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  6. ^ "Scheduled Passengers Carried". World Air Transport Statistics 58th Edition. IATA. Archived from the original on January 2, 2015. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  7. ^ "Scheduled Passengers Carried". World Air Transport Statistics 57th Edition. IATA. Archived from the original on November 13, 2013. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  8. ^ "Scheduled Passengers Carried". World Air Transport Statistics 56th Edition. IATA. Archived from the original on December 17, 2012. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  9. ^ a b "Summary of passenger and freight traffic" (PDF). World Air Transport Statistics. IATA. 2017.
  10. ^ a b "Summary of passenger and freight traffic" (PDF). World Air Transport Statistics. IATA. 2016.
  11. ^ "Scheduled Passenger - Kilometres Flown". World Air Transport Statistics 59th Edition. IATA. Archived from the original on July 6, 2015. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  12. ^ "Scheduled Passenger - Kilometres Flown". World Air Transport Statistics 58th Edition. IATA. Archived from the original on November 11, 2014. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  13. ^ "Scheduled Passenger - Kilometres Flown". World Air Transport Statistics 57th Edition. IATA. Archived from the original on October 29, 2013. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  14. ^ "Scheduled Passenger - Kilometres Flown". World Air Transport Statistics 56th Edition. IATA. Archived from the original on December 16, 2012. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  15. ^ "Scheduled Freight Tonne - Kilometres". World Air Transport Statistics 59th Edition. IATA. Archived from the original on July 4, 2015. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  16. ^ "Scheduled Freight Tonne - Kilometres". World Air Transport Statistics 58th Edition. IATA. Archived from the original on November 25, 2014. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  17. ^ "Scheduled Freight Tonne - Kilometres". World Air Transport Statistics 57th Edition. IATA. Archived from the original on September 21, 2013. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  18. ^ "Scheduled Freight Tonne - Kilometres". World Air Transport Statistics 56th Edition. IATA. Archived from the original on December 15, 2012. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  19. ^ "World Airline Fleets". Air Transport World. July 2019. p. 45-55.
  20. ^ a b "Ethiopian Airlines set to serve more country markets than MEB3 in S19, Ryanair still tops route table". Airline Network News and Analysis. 27 February 2019.
  21. ^ "Top 10 World's Largest Airlines". AirportSpotting. 8 December 2017.
  22. ^ "American Airlines Tops The World's Most Valuable Airlines List in 2018". Airways International. April 26, 2018.