Global air carrier market - share of ASMs by region 2018

In terms of the number of available seat miles, the Asia/Oceania region is the largest market for air travel with almost 35 percent of global available seat miles in 2018.

Available seat miles

Available seat miles (ASM) is a measure of carrying capacity created by multiplying the number of seats available for sale on an aircraft by the number of miles flown. For example, a flight with 250 seats flying 1,000 miles generates 250,000 ASMs. In every year since 2009, the total number of flights and passengers transported globally has increased.

Air travel in the Asia Pacific region

The fact that the Asia/Oceania region has the largest air travel market is likely not surprising given the region’s massive population. The region is home to seven of the world’s ten business domestic air routes, and eight of the ten busiest international flight routes (all of which are intra-regional). What may be surprising though is that this does not translate into higher levels of passenger traffic at the region’s airports. Less than half of the world’s 15 busiest airports in 2018 were in the Asia/Oceania region.

Aviation market size in 2018, by region and share of available seat miles

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Release date

April 2019



Survey time period


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