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Low-cost airlines most popular in Europe

Low-cost flights most popular in Europe

Low-cost flights are most popular in Europe accounting for 38% of all air traffic in 2012.

The Amadeus Air Traffic Travel Intelligence solution report revealed 30% of air traffic in North America was also from budget airlines while in the Middle East, low-cost carriers represent just 14% of all air travel, in Asia 19% and Latin America 25%.

It found air travel in 2012 was higher than 2011 in all regions of the world but the most significant growth was 9% in Asia and 6% in Latin America.

And the Middle East is rapidly growing as a flight hub with European and Asian traffic routed via there growing by 20% from 2011 and 2012.

When taken as a group, Doha, Abu Dhabi and Dubai airports serve roughly 15% of all air traffic volume that goes from Asia to Europe and from Europe to the South West Pacific.

The airline industry has become more competitive over the past three years.

The percentage of air traffic served by just one or two airlines has fallen by 2% each year from 39% in 2010 to 35% in 2012 while the percentage of air traffic with four or more competing airlines has risen consistently from 35% in 2010 to 38% in 2012.

Jeju-Seoul in South Korea remains the world's busiest air route but Sapporo-Tokyo has overtaken Rio de Janeiro-Sao Paulo to second-busiest route ranking.

Beijing-Shanghai has risen from seventh-busiest route in the world in 2011, to fourth-busiest in 2012. Sydney-Melbourne is the fifth busiest.

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