Frankfurt Airport (FRA) continues to strengthen its status as Germany’s leading international aviation hub. Starting on March 31, travelers will be able to fly from Frankfurt to a total of 306 destinations in 98 countries.
In this year’s summer season, the number of flights will increase moderately (by more than one percent) compared to last year. Seat capacity will also grow by between one and two percent.
European, domestic German and especially intercontinental flight offerings will all expand. A rise of between 1.5 and two percent of aircraft movements is expected in the intercontinental category, with seat capacity increasing by 1.5 to 2.5 percent.
New long-haul destinations
United Airlines will introduce daily services to Denver (DEN) in early May. Lufthansa will also offer a once-daily flight to DEN, while adding Austin (AUS), Texas as a new destination in North America. Cathay Pacific is increasing the frequency on its Frankfurt-Hong Kong (HKG) route, thus bringing the total to three services a week. Qatar Airways will offer more seats on one of its two daily flights to Doha (DOH), which will now be operated by an Airbus A380.
The intercontinental connections available from Frankfurt are marked by an impressive diversity, serving a total of 137 destinations. Lufthansa is continuing the new services introduced last winter to Cancún (CUN) in Mexico and Agadir (AGA) in Morocco. Condor will retain its flights to Kuala Lumpur (KUL) in Malaysia while stepping up the frequency to Phoenix (PHX) in the U.S., Calgary (YYC) in Canada, and Mombasa (MBA) in Kenya. Air India will also maintain its Frankfurt-Mumbai (BOM) route.
More connections to Turkey from FRA
Holidaymakers who wish to spend their vacation in Turkey have quite a few options to choose from: 11 airlines will now fly from FRA to a total of 15 destinations in that country, 15 percent more than before. They include a new service to Bodrum (BJV) by Lufthansa, which is also adding two other European holiday destinations: Heraklion (HER) in Greece and Tivat (TIV) in Montenegro.
Lufthansa will also continue flying to the new destinations it inaugurated last winter. Among them are Thessaloniki (SKG) in Greece, Trieste (TRS) in Italy, and Tromsø (TOS) in Norway. The airline is also adding more frequencies to Tirana (TIA) in Albania and Sofia (SOF) in Bulgaria, as well as Palma de Majorca (PMI) and Pamplona (PNA) in Spain. German leisure carrier TUIfly is strengthening its services from Frankfurt to Lamezia Terme (SUF) in Italy, Larnaca (LCA) in Cyprus, and Djerba-Zarzis (DJE) in Tunisia. In late March, Ryanair will add more services to Dublin (DUB), the Irish capital, bringing the total to 12 a week. Altogether, the total number of European destinations served from FRA will climb to 154, and within Germany to 15.
The impact on Frankfurt Airport of recent airline insolvencies is negligible. Flybmi will no longer be serving Bristol (BRS) in the United Kingdom and Jönköping (JKG) and Karlstad (KSD) in Sweden but because the aircraft used on those routes had only limited passenger seating their cancellation is only minimally affecting FRA’s total capacity. Nor are the failures of two other airlines, Germania and Small Planet Germany, having more than a very slight effect on total traffic.
Good preparation for a positive travel experience
The moderate growth in flight movements is fully in line with the expectations of Fraport, the operator of Frankfurt Airport. To handle the increase, Fraport has been hiring more staff and allotting more space for additional security checks during the summer season. Nevertheless, passengers may still experience processing delays on peak days. They are therefore advised to check in online before leaving home, arrive at the airport at least two and a half hours before departure, and then head immediately for the security checkpoint. Travelers intending to drive to the airport and leave their vehicles there can book parking spaces online in advance. Passengers are also advised to observe the airlines’ rules on cabin luggage. Fraport recommends taking as few carry-on items as possible.