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Southeast Asia Aviation Outlook and Airport Planning Insights MARCH 2023

Commercial strategy, Expert view, Industry trends

Data analytics is a game changer, enabling airports to plan more intelligently

March 29, 2023

With pandemic and border controls subsiding in Asia, airports need to ensure there is sufficient capacity to meet the travel demand.

By Pang Yee Huat, Solutions Engineer at Cirium

As air travel begins to recover internationally, data analytics is more important than ever to help gain a better understanding of the ever-changing aviation market and to adopt a holistic approach towards decision making. With a focus on increasing operational efficiency and improving passenger experience, airports are beginning to utilize different datasets to derive insight into airlines’ flight performance as well as to get a deeper understanding behind the commercial planning process of their industry partners.

With the pandemic and various border controls subsiding in Asia, there is a strong interest by airports to monitor the pace of recovery to ensure that there is sufficient capacity across the airport ecosystem to meet the travel demand. Interestingly, looking at tracked utilization data, international seats from APAC countries in February 2023 continue to be 40% behind 2019 levels. This has been largely due to the absence of international flights from China, which is only now resuming and at less than 10% of 2019 levels.

Airlines are a crucial stakeholder in the airport ecosystem so an understanding of their fleet composition and aircraft utilization plays an important role in airport planning.

Improvements in aircraft technology have enabled narrowbody aircraft to fly further than ever before. This has allowed airlines to deploy narrowbody aircraft on long routes which traditionally required widebody aircraft.

Looking at airline schedules in February 2023, five out of the world’s top ten longest narrowbody flights were transatlantic routes, with Scandinavian Airlines’ Copenhagen – Washington Dulles route leading the chart at 4,074miles with a block time of 9hrs 30mins. Long haul narrowbody aircraft are becoming increasingly popular with airlines and this phenomenon will continue to keep pace as new narrowbody aircraft such as the A321 XLR enter into service in the future. This poses new consideration for airports. Will airlines pivot towards operating more frequencies with narrowbody aircraft on certain routes? With higher frequencies, does the airport have sufficient runway and airport capacity to take on these additional resource requirements?

Looking further, future trends such as the development of Electric Vertical Take-Off and Landing (eVTOL) aircraft are increasingly popular projects in the commercial aviation industry. For airports and other interested parties across the aviation industry, monitoring the market commitments by different operators for each of these various models can give an indication of the eVTOL models that would most likely be used in their respective regions.

Data analytics will continue to evolve as different datasets become available so technology will continue to improve. Find out more in Cirium’s Southeast Asia Aviation Outlook and Airport Planning Insights that covers topics such as Asia Pacific aviation demand and recovery outlook and understand airport insights beyond the regular aviation datasets.


Download Cirium’s Southeast Asia Aviation Outlook and Airport Planning Insights now!

Read more about the eVTOL market. And learn more about Cirium Fleets Analyzer, Tracked Utilization and SRS Analyzer.

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