Aeroflot Group, Russia’s largest airline conglomerate, served 60.7 million passengers in 2019, up nine per cent year-on-year. The four carriers within the group – flag carrier and title airline Aeroflot, low-cost carrier (LCC) Pobeda Airlines, medium-segment operator Rossiya Airlines and Russian far eastern regional carrier Aurora Airlines – demonstrated mixed operational results in their respective customer segments. Whilst the LCC grew considerably by 43.2 per cent year-on-year, the other traditional business-model airline members trailed well behind in terms of growth rates.
Last year, Aeroflot Group’s share of the entire Russian airlines’ market decreased by one percentage point on 2018 and now stands at 46.8 per cent.
Although combined RPKs and ASKs climbed for the entire group in 2019 – by 9.2 and 10.3 per cent year-on-year, respectively – the seat load factor decreased by 0.8 p.p. year-on-year to 81.9 per cent.
As of 31 December 2019, the group’s airlines’ combined fleet size of 358 was eight aircraft less than 2018.
In 2019, Aeroflot – Russian Airlines, the country’s national flag carrier and undisputed market leader, carried some 37.2 million passengers, a modest year-on-year increase of 4.1 per cent. Its RPKs increased by 3.8 per cent year-on-year, whilst ASKs rose by 5.5 per cent. At the same time, Aeroflot’s seat load factor decreased by 1.3 p.p. to 79.2 per cent. As of December 31, 2019, Aeroflot had 245 aircraft in its fleet, compared to 253 at the end of 2018.
The St Petersburg-based Rossiya Airlines celebrated its 85th anniversary in 2019 by beating its historic traffic record, carrying 11.553 million passengers, a 3.7 per cent improvement on the previous year’s traffic numbers, thereby remaining in third place in the league table of Russia’s largest airlines. Its RPKs improved by 13.8 percentage points in the period, whilst its seat load factor stood at 85.3 per cent, down 1.3 p.p. compared to 2018.
Roughly half of Rossiya’s air travellers flew to or from its original St Petersburg Pulkovo airport base across a network of 54 routes. Approximately 12 per cent of those passengers used Rossiya’s connecting flights via Pulkovo and the remaining five million travelled through its Moscow base airports of Vnukovo and Sheremetyevo.
LCC Pobeda Airlines
Pobeda, the country’s only budget airline, transported 10.287 million passengers last year, an impressive 43.2 per cent year-on-year growth, making it Russia’s fourth largest passenger carrier. It also enjoyed an increased 41.4 p.p. in RPKs. The average seat load factor across its fleet of 30 Boeing 737-800s remained level at 94 per cent.
Regional carrier Aurora Airlines, which operates in the far east of Russia and is co-owned by the administration of the Sakhalin region, was accountable for 1.657 million of the group’s passengers last year, a modest 2.2 per cent improvement on 2018, and included 1.2 million on 18,861 domestic flights. The remaining passengers travelled outside Russia on Aurora’s 6,284 international flights, a 14 per cent increase on 2018. RPKs reached 2.386 billion.
The regional airline operates a fleet of 23 aircraft, including 10 Airbus А319s, 10 DHC-8s and three DHC-6 Twin Otters, which it utilises for local flights.
Russian Aviation Insider
Powered by Air Transport Observer, Russia & CIS’ premier information provider on commercial aviation with a 20-year legacy, Russian Aviation Insider provides you with timely and reliable business news, insights and analysis on commercial aviation all around CIS.
Sign up for our free Newsletter and never miss:
Get relevant data from reliable industry sources!