By Adrian Bishop
German carrier Lufthansa transported more passengers than any other European airline in 2017, it has announced.
Lufthansa Group Airlines reached an all-time high of around 130 million passengers, overtaking budget carrier Ryanair on 129 million.
The German group includes Austrian and Swiss Airlines, no-frills Eurowings, including Germanwings and Brussels Airlines.
The airline says, “In total, the airlines of the Lufthansa Group welcomed around 130 million passengers on board their aircraft in 2017 and set with this number a new passenger record.”
December 2017 passenger numbers with Lufthansa Group soared 19.9% year-on-year to 9.3 million.
Europe’s third biggest airline in 2017 was IAG, parent company of British Airways, Aer Lingus and Spain’s Iberia, with 104.8 million passengers. Air France-KLM came fourth with 98.7 million passengers.
Meanwhile, two UK airlines are among the most punctual of the largest carriers in the world, according to a new ranking.
British Airways (BA) and low-cost carrier, easyJet, were named in the top 20 for annual on-time performance (OTP) in the OAG Punctuality League 2018.
BA came equal 10th in the mega airlines category with a 78.55% on-time record and easyJet 15th with 74.82% punctuality and 18th among low-cost carriers.
European airline airBaltic was the most punctual airline in the world, with more than 90.01% on-time performance. Hong Kong Airlines was second on 88.83% and Hawaiian Airlines third with 87.24. No UK airlines appeared in the overall top 20, although Irish carrier, Aer Lingus, came 10th on 84.46%.
Looking at airport punctuality, Birmingham Airport was first among medium sized airports for the second year running, with an OTP of 89.52%. Liverpool’s John Lennon airport was seventh among small airports with 85.83% OTP.
Heathrow was 10th worldwide for mega airports and sixth among all UK airports, with an OTP of 74.80%.
The results were based on full-year figures from 2017.