Travel Transportation in Asia Pacific

August 2021

Travel restrictions imposed to try and limit the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19) had a negative impact on the travel industry in 2020. Global travel came to a halt as countries closed their borders, while demand for domestic trips was severely undermined by local restrictions and social distancing measures. Moreover, ongoing concerns about the virus and the uncertain economic outlook were continuing to exert downward pressure on demand even as official restrictions on travel were eased.

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Key Findings

Increased competition between scheduled airlines and low-cost carriers

Scheduled airlines retain a dominant position in Asia Pacific. Most airlines are striving to expand their routes, especially in long-haul markets. However, scheduled airlines have long been facing the challenge of the rapid growth of low-cost carriers on short-haul routes. As budget airlines continue to expand aggressively by opening more routes at more affordable prices, competition in the airline industry will become increasingly fierce.

Substantial growth potential in China and India

As passenger numbers keep rising, China and India continue to see significant investment in their travel transportation infrastructure. China has been investing heavily in railway infrastructure and technology development in order to enhance support for the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympic Games, while the Indian government announced plans to increase its airport capacity five-fold. With increasing demand from domestic travellers, the markets in China and India are expected to boom over the forecast period.

Airline industry is shifting sales online

Airline value sales are shifting from offline to online. In 2015, airline online value sales started to exceed offline sales in the Asia Pacific region, with most countries witnessing an increase in airline online revenue. This has been supported by a trend for airlines to incentivise customers to book directly through their own websites or apps.

Transportation continues booming in Asia Pacific

The growing middle class, the search for more life experiences and increased travel spending continue to drive the revenue of travel transportation in Asia Pacific. As governments continue to increase investment in infrastructure, overall transport capacity is expected to be increased significantly. 


Key findings

Regional Overview

Asia Pacific generates the greatest travel transportation sales
Immediate return to positive growth from 2021
Sales decline sharply in all Asia Pacific countries in 2020
China continues to expand its high-speed rail network
Major losses for scheduled airlines
Online sales outpacing offline sales over the historic period

Leading Companies and Brands

Cathay Pacific loses share in Hong Kong
Leading Chinese airlines increase their regional shares
Home markets important for leading airlines
Chinese brands lead the regional rankings

Forecast Projections

Immediate return to positive growth expected from 2021…
…with sales returning to pre-pandemic levels in 2023

Country Snapshots

China: Market context
China: Competitive landscape
Hong Kong, China: Market context
Hong Kong, China: Competitive landscape
India: Market context
India: Competitive landscape
Indonesia: Market context
Indonesia: Competitive landscape
Japan: Market context
Japan: Competitive landscape
Malaysia: Market context
Malaysia: Competitive landscape
Philippines: Market context
Philippines: Competitive landscape
Singapore: Market context
Singapore: Competitive landscape
South Korea: Market context
South Korea: Competitive landscape
Taiwan: Market context
Taiwan: Competitive landscape
Thailand: Market context
Thailand: Competitive landscape
Vietnam: Market context
Vietnam: Competitive landscape


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