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LCC market in the U.S. - statistics & facts

Over the last decade, the growth of the low-cost carrier (LCC) segment has been a fundamental development in the aviation industry. The low-cost business model, based on high seating density and aircraft utilization at low fares, has triggered key changes in the vigorously competitive industry. With both short- and long-haul flights, LCCs are the driving force in the passenger air transportation business and are forecasted to exceed 254 billion U.S. dollars in size by 2027.

Leading LCCs in the U.S.

In the United States, LCCs hold above 30 percent of the domestic market. Overall, Southwest Airlines was ranked second among the leading airlines in the U.S., with a market share of 17.4 percent in 2020, just behind legacy carrier American Airlines. With flights to 104 destinations, Southwest Airlines was heavily impacted by the travel restrictions imposed to contain the spread of the coronavirus. The U.S. airline transported only 54 million passengers on 54.2 billion revenue passenger-miles, had a capacity of only 103.5 billion available seat miles (ASMs) and reported net income loss of over 4.2 billion U.S. dollars in 2020. JetBlue Airways was ranked seventh, with a domestic market share of 4.7 percent and operating revenue streams of only three billion U.S. dollars in 2020.

The ultra-low cost carrier model

Of particular interest is the emergence of the ultra-low cost carriers (ULLCs), like Spirit Airlines, Frontier Airlines or Allegiant Air in the U.S. domestic market, all of which are benefiting from the low jet fuel prices. Based on its ultra-low cost business model, Spirit Airlines provides unbundled base fares with the option of booking other ancillary air-related products. They currently serve 78 destinations in the United States, Caribbean, and Latin America. The company reported also operating revenue streams impacted by the coronavirus pandemic; in 2020 they generated only 1.8 billion U.S. dollars from transporting passengers on only 19.3 billion revenue-passenger miles.

Interesting statistics

In the following 4 chapters, you will quickly find the 28 most important statistics relating to "Low Cost Carrier (LCC) market in the United States".


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