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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The EU's statistics agency has published fascinating detailed statistics about passager traffic between each European airport and all its counterparts in the world. The last fully available figures are from 2010.

I've compiled the busiest air routes between European cities and cities outside of Europe based on passenger traffic in 2010. Europe in this definition excludes Russia and Turkey, so Russian and Turkish cities appear as cities outside of Europe. I've also grouped all the airports of a given metropolitan area together, to better reflect the actual intensity of traffic between cities.

NOTE THAT there are no direct flights between Europe and Oceania. Therefore, passengers between London and Australia/New Zealand appear in the London-Dubai, London-Hong Kong, and London-Singapore air routes. Passengers between Paris and New Caledonia/French Polynesia appear in the Paris-Tokyo and Paris-Los Angeles air routes.

I tried to add up all the airports properly, but if you think I forgot something, please let me know.

Enjoy! :cheers:

Busiest air routes between Europe and outside Europe in 2010 (passenger traffic):
1- London-New York: 3,643,080 passengers
2- London-Dubai: 2,604,284
3- London-Hong Kong: 1,801,520
4- Paris-New York: 1,635,157
5- London-Singapore: 1,507,032
6- London-Los Angeles: 1,419,144
7- Paris-Montréal: 1,242,821
8- Frankfurt-New York: 1,235,660
9- London-Toronto: 1,223,711
10- Paris-Casablanca: 1,148,034
11- London-Chicago: 1,138,579
12- Paris - Pointe-à-Pitre: 1,098,322
13- Düsseldorf/Cologne-Antalya: 1,072,463
14- London-Washington: 1,017,830
15- Paris-Tunis: 999,046
16- London-Bangkok: 991,862
17- London-Delhi: 979,146
18- Paris - Fort-de-France: 976,978
19- London-Mumbai: 958,103
20- Paris-Algiers: 954,334
21- London-Istanbul: 936,266
22- Frankfurt-Chicago: 888,936
23- Düsseldorf/Cologne-Istanbul: 887,986
24- Paris-St Denis (Réunion): 887,251
25- London-Johannesburg: 886,148
26- London-Boston: 866,414
27- London-San Francisco: 860,617
28- Madrid-Buenos Aires: 857,851
29- Rome-New York: 851,527
30- Paris-Tokyo: 849,055
31- Madrid-New York: 848,538
32- Frankfurt-Singapore: 846,632
33- Frankfurt-Istanbul: 842,809
34- London-Miami: 821,983
35- Amsterdam-New York: 812,399
36- London-Orlando: 792,418
37- Paris-Marrakech: 772,409
38- Paris-Istanbul: 767,802
39- London-Tel Aviv: 730,168
40- Paris-Tel Aviv: 724,104
41- Paris-Dubai: 716,892
42- Amsterdam-Istanbul: 703,112
43- London-Tokyo: 682,830
44- Frankfurt-Dubai: 679,173
45- Frankfurt-Washington: 676,592
46- London-Moscow: 671,258
47- Frankfurt-Bangkok: 670,423
48- Dublin-New York: 654,519
49- Munich-Istanbul: 643,403
50- Paris-Moscow: 642,729

I'll add the 10 busiest air routes for each region of the world later.
 

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That's also the case for Istanbul, but since these numbers are based on EU statistics it's only logical that they aren't counted.


But the numbers still show that London is the absolute uncontested #1 city in Europe. It has the busiest routes from Europe to the other top international cities in the world.

Paris comes in second, but is much more focused on it's overseas territories and it's former colonies. It scores lower on routes to the big American and Asian cities then London except for Tokyo. But that's mainly because Paris is a much bigger tourist destination then London for Japanese people.

In Germany international traffic is spread out over several cities, therefor the German airports are coming in lower in the list then London and Paris. But it's interesting that the routes from Frankfurt in the list are more "international" then the routes from Paris.

Another interesting note, London - Hong Kong is the only Europe - China route in the list.

btw, using yellow as a fond should be avoided as much as possible since it's unreadable.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Paris comes in second, but is much more focused on it's overseas territories and it's former colonies.
Same for London. All the top London routes are with ex-colonies (whereas the top Paris route is with a city that was never a French colony: NYC). The first route between London and a non-former British colonial city is London-Los Angeles (although of course LA is Anglophone and part of and Anglo-Saxon, otherwise it would be London-Bangkok).
But it's interesting that the routes from Frankfurt in the list are more "international" then the routes from Paris.
That sentence makes no sense.
Another interesting note, London - Hong Kong is the only Europe - China route in the list.
As I've already explained, a lot of the passengers on the London-Hong Kong route are in fact passengers between Australia/New Zealand and Britain. In terms of true traffic with Chinese cities, it's actually Paris and Frankfurt which dominate, but I'll post about that later.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Top 10 air routes between each region of the world and Europe. I'm starting with the Americas.

NORTH AMERICA:
1- London-New York: 3,643,080 passengers
2- Paris-New York: 1,635,157
3- London-Los Angeles: 1,419,144
4- Paris-Montréal: 1,242,821
5- Frankfurt-New York: 1,235,660
6- London-Toronto: 1,223,711
7- London-Chicago: 1,138,579
8- London-Washington: 1,017,830
9- Frankfurt-Chicago: 888,936
10- London-Boston: 866,414

LATIN AMERICA:
1- Madrid-Buenos Aires: 857,851
2- Madrid-Bogota: 577 843
3- Paris-São Paulo: 537,505
4- Madrid-Mexico City: 519,611
5- Paris-Rio de Janeiro: 510,719
6- Madrid-Lima: 507,535
7- Madrid-São Paulo: 494,359
8- Frankfurt-São Paulo: 444,907
9- London-São Paulo: 412,442
10- Paris-Mexico City: 402,080

CARIBBEAN & GUIANAS:
1- Paris - Pointe-à-Pitre: 1,098,322
2- Paris - Fort-de-France: 976,978
3- London-Barbados: 492,221
4- Madrid-Havana: 401,312
5- Madrid-Santo Domingo: 330,293
6- Paris-Punta Cana (Dominican Republic): 309,950
7- Paris-Havana: 273,245
8- Paris-St Martin: 268,073
9- Amsterdam-Paramaribo: 264,489
10- Madrid-Punta Cana (Dominican Republic): 261,895
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
INDIAN SUBCONTINENT:
1- London-Delhi: 979 146
2- London-Mumbai: 958,103
3- Frankfurt-Mumbai: 373,632
4- Frankfurt-Delhi: 318,130
5- Paris-Delhi: 260,202
6- Amsterdam-Delhi: 224,376
7- London-Male (Maldives): 206,739
8- Frankfurt-Bangalore: 200,270
9- Manchester-Islamabad: 178,684
10- London-Colombo: 169,469

EASTERN & SOUTH-EASTERN ASIA:
1- London-Hong Kong: 1,801,520
2- London-Singapore: 1,507,032
3- London-Bangkok: 991,862
4- Paris-Tokyo: 849,055
5- Frankfurt-Singapore: 846,632
6- London-Tokyo: 682,830
7- Frankfurt-Bangkok: 670,423
8- Paris-Hong Kong: 601,638
9- London-Kuala Lumpur: 596,877
10- Frankfurt-Tokyo: 583,751

OCEANIA:
No direct routes. Passengers appear in the routes London-Dubai, London-Hong Kong, London-Singapore, Paris-Tokyo, Paris-Los Angeles, etc.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
MIDDLE-EAST & NORTH AFRICA:
1- London-Dubai: 2,604,284
2- Paris-Casablanca: 1,148,034
3- Düsseldorf/Cologne-Antalya: 1,072,463
4- Paris-Tunis: 999,046
5- Paris-Algiers: 954,334
6- London-Istanbul: 936,266
7- Düsseldorf/Cologne-Istanbul: 887,986
8- Frankfurt-Istanbul: 842,809
9- Paris-Marrakech: 772,409
10- Paris-Istanbul: 767,802

SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA:
1- Paris-St Denis (Réunion): 887,251
2- London-Johannesburg: 886,148
3- Paris-Mauritius: 505,684
4- London-Cape Town: 491,872
5- London-Nairobi: 469,193
6- London-Lagos: 452,434
7- Frankfurt-Johannesburg: 416,903
8- Amsterdam-Nairobi: 405,544
9- Lisbon-Luanda: 345,438
10- Paris-Johannesburg: 320,006
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Top 10 air routes towards the BRIC countries. @Momo1435: that's where you can see that the routes dominating mainland China are in fact Frankfurt and Paris, London-Hong Kong being a special case due in part to transit between Australia/New Zealand and Britain.

BRAZIL:
1- Paris-São-Paulo: 537,505
2- Paris-Rio de Janeiro: 510,719
3- Madrid-São-Paulo: 494,359
4- Frankfurt-São-Paulo: 444,907
5- London-São-Paulo: 412,442
6- Lisbon-São-Paulo: 275,250
7- Lisbon-Rio de Janeiro: 260,303
8- Amsterdam-São-Paulo: 198,110
9- Milan-São-Paulo: 184,132
10- Rome-São-Paulo: 180,967

RUSSIA:
1- London-Moscow: 671,258
2- Paris-Moscow: 642,729
3- Frankfurt-Moscow: 610,595
4- Munich-Moscow: 494,515
5- Vienna-Moscow: 465,330
6- Barcelona-Moscow: 390,361
7- Berlin-Moscow: 387,808
8- Rome-Moscow: 324,935
9- Düsseldorf-Moscow: 322,561
10- Amsterdam-Moscow: 314,206

INDIA:
1- London-Delhi: 979 146
2- London-Mumbai: 958,103
3- Frankfurt-Mumbai: 373,632
4- Frankfurt-Delhi: 318,130
5- Paris-Delhi: 260,202
6- Amsterdam-Delhi: 224,376
7- Frankfurt-Bangalore: 200,270
8- Frankfurt-Chennai/Madras: 162,323
9- London-Bangalore: 157,140
10- Amsterdam-Mumbai: 156,733

CHINA:
1- London-Hong Kong: 1,801,520
2- Paris-Hong Kong: 601,638
3- Frankfurt-Beijing: 539,620
4- Frankfurt-Shanghai: 528,955
5- Paris-Shanghai: 520,981
6- Frankfurt-Hong Kong: 446,149
7- Paris-Beijing: 435,857
8- Amsterdam-Hong Kong: 428,666
9- Amsterdam-Beijing: 335,157
10- London-Shanghai: 331,511
 

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The only surprises are the relatively low passenger numbers from all European airports to Tokyo and the fact that Frankfurt-Bangkok isn't significantly higher in the list.

London-Hong Kong being a special case due in part to transit between Australia/New Zealand and Britain.
Actually the vast majority of flights from the UK to Australia/NZ go via Singapore and not via HK.
 

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Same for London. All the top London routes are with ex-colonies (whereas the top Paris route is with a city that was never a French colony: NYC). The first route between London and a non-former British colonial city is London-Los Angeles (although of course LA is Anglophone and part of and Anglo-Saxon, otherwise it would be London-Bangkok).
I hope you do understand that cities like Hong Kong, Singapore and Delhi are on a completely different level then cities like Pointe-à-Pitre, Fort-de-France and St Denis (Réunion).

They might be big routes for Paris, but since they don't have direct flights to any other European city outside france they might be a big routes out of Paris but are internationally completely irrelevant.

And that's the same reason why Frankfurt seems to have bigger important international routes then Paris. Which is not that surprising since Frankfurt is the 2nd financial city in Europe after London.

And that's reflected in the list when you take these smaller destinations plus the Mediterranean cities and Moscow, it has significantly less blue.

1- London-New York: 3,643,080 passengers
2- London-Dubai: 2,604,284
3- London-Hong Kong: 1,801,520
4- Paris-New York: 1,635,157
5- London-Singapore: 1,507,032
6- London-Los Angeles: 1,419,144
7- Paris-Montréal: 1,242,821
8- Frankfurt-New York: 1,235,660
9- London-Toronto: 1,223,711

11- London-Chicago: 1,138,579


14- London-Washington: 1,017,830

16- London-Bangkok: 991,862
17- London-Delhi: 979,146

19- London-Mumbai: 958,103


22- Frankfurt-Chicago: 888,936


25- London-Johannesburg: 886,148
26- London-Boston: 866,414
27- London-San Francisco: 860,617
28- Madrid-Buenos Aires: 857,851
29- Rome-New York: 851,527
30- Paris-Tokyo: 849,055
31- Madrid-New York: 848,538
32- Frankfurt-Singapore: 846,632

34- London-Miami: 821,983
35- Amsterdam-New York: 812,399
36- London-Orlando: 792,418



41- Paris-Dubai: 716,892

43- London-Tokyo: 682,830
44- Frankfurt-Dubai: 679,173
45- Frankfurt-Washington: 676,592

47- Frankfurt-Bangkok: 670,423
48- Dublin-New York: 654,519
 

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OCEANIA:
No direct routes. Passengers appear in the routes London-Dubai, London-Hong Kong, London-Singapore, Paris-Tokyo, Paris-Los Angeles, etc.
The lion's share of the numbers on the Dubai routes are transit traffic - onwards mainly to Indian subcontinent followed by SE Asia, Oceania, China etc
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
And that's reflected in the list when you take these smaller destinations plus the Mediterranean cities and Moscow, it has significantly less blue.
And traffic from Paris to North Africa and Moscow is less "international" than from Frankfurt to the cities you listed? :laugh:

Besides, these top 50 routes are only the tip of the iceberg. Further down the list you find many other destinations (for example Paris has most of the traffic to Vietnam, much more traffic to Seoul and Osaka than London, more traffic to Latin America than London and Frankfurt, etc).

Overall, Paris has much more traffic than Frankfut: in 2011 there were 91,519,479 air passengers in Paris vs. 53,009,221 air passengers in Frankfurt. And even if we remove the domestic French flights and flights to overseas France, there were 71,307,512 air passengers on purely international flights to and from Paris, whereas there were only 49,477,184 air passengers on international flights to and from Frankfurt.

Paris and Frankfurt frankly don't play in the same category, whichever way you look at it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Looking at the 2010 figures from the European statistics agency, if we take only the non-European routes (incl. Russia and Turkey in the non-European routes), and if we exclude the French overseas departments from the non-European routes, we find the following figures:
1- London airports: 45,243,972 passengers to and from airports outside of Europe and the French overseas departments
2- Paris airports: 33,270,805
3- Frankfurt airports: 24,957,056
4- Amsterdam airport: 17,689,654
5- Madrid airport: 11,485,894

Now if we're even more strict and exclude Russia, Turkey, North Africa, and the French overseas departments, we find this:
1- London airports: 41,015,476 passengers to and from airports outside of Europe, Turkey, North Africa, and French overseas departments
2- Paris airports: 24,446,367
3- Frankfurt airports: 21,509,786
4- Amsterdam airport: 14,956,793
5- Madrid airport: 9,811,287

So I frankly can't see how we can say that Paris's air traffic is less international than Frankfurt's.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Traffic between each European metropolitan area and the regions of the world outside Europe in 2010. I give the top 10 for each region of the world. NOTE THAT I don't have data for Zurich airport, so it's missing from the lists here (but all the data that I posted before in this thread included Zurich).

NORTH AMERICA:
1- London airports: 17,086,856
2- Frankfurt airports: 7,956,297
3- Paris airports: 7,762,634
4- Amsterdam airport: 5,314,479
5- Rome airports: 2,515,727
6- Munich airport: 2,256,446
7- Madrid airport: 2,132,923
8- Manchester airport: 1,473,950
9- Dublin airport: 1,466,775
10- Brussels airports: 1,393,417

LATIN AMERICA:
1- Madrid airport: 5,138,366
2- Paris airports: 2,267,208
3- Lisbon airport: 1,454,568
4- Frankfurt airports: 1,208,931
5- Amsterdam airport: 842,653
6- London airports: 792,892
7- Rome airports: 655,204
8- Milan airports: 308,588
9- Barcelona airport: 190,921
10- Manchester airport: 154,577

CARIBBEAN & GUIANAS:
1- Paris airports: 3,419,938
2- London airports: 1,745,874
3- Amsterdam airport: 1,152,491
4- Madrid airport: 1,080,995
5- Frankfurt airports: 496,015
6- Manchester airport: 447,689
7- Milan airport: 233,533
8- Cologne/Düsseldorf airport: 158,775
9- Brussels airport: 121,351
10- Munich airport: 105,723
 

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But neither of them are longhaul routes.
Indeed, on international long haul routes that are offered to all major European cities Paris falls far behind London and is on par with Frankfurt.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
INDIAN SUBCONTINENT:
1- London airports: 3,169,362
2- Frankfurt airports: 1,512,037
3- Paris airports: 691,508
4- Brussels airports: 438,566
5- Amsterdam airport: 398,091
6- Manchester airport: 347,642
7- Munich airport: 268,866
8- Milan airports: 159,558
9- Rome airports: 154,770
10- Helsinki airport: 136,139

EASTERN & SOUTH-EASTERN ASIA (this includes transit passengers to Oceania):
1- London airports: 6,532,208
2- Frankfurt airports: 4,921,368
3- Paris airports: 4,713,366
4- Amsterdam airport: 3,468,252
5- Munich airport: 1,436,718
6- Helsinki airport: 1,272,633
7- Rome airports: 1,091,675
8- Copenhagen airport: 807,414
9- Milan airports: 648,708
10- Vienna airport: 621,727
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
MIDDLE-EAST & NORTH AFRICA (this includes Turkey):
1- Paris airports: 19,956,614
2- London airports: 14,348,714
3- Frankfurt airports: 7,517,076
4- Amsterdam airport: 5,519,202
5- Brussels airports: 5,010,963
6- Cologne/Düsseldorf: 4,985,761
7- Rome airports: 4,901,403
8- Milan airports: 4,246,983
9- Manchester airport: 3,846,979
10- Munich airport: 3,832,578

SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA:
1- Paris airports: 4,417,876
2- London airports: 3,300,142
3- Amsterdam airport: 1,559,497
4- Frankfurt airports: 1,324,501
5- Lisbon airport: 791,256
6- Brussels airports: 632,687
7- Rome airports: 477,620
8- Madrid airport: 344,463
9- Milan airports: 269,052
10- Munich airport: 268,701
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Traffic between each European metropolitan area and the BRIC countries in 2010. Zurich is missing.

BRAZIL:
1- Lisbon airport: 1,357,318
2- Paris airports: 1,156,940
3- Madrid airport: 707,392
4- Frankfurt airports: 528,980
5- London airports: 502,235
6- Milan airports: 247,983
7- Amsterdam airport: 222,883
8- Rome airports: 213,729
9- Porto airport: 105,649
10- Munich airport: 99,134

RUSSIA:
1- Frankfurt airports: 1,031,611
2- Paris airports: 822,170
3- London airports: 749,883
4- Prague airport: 734,847
5- Munich airport: 687,492
6- Vienna airport: 620,803
7- Barcelona airport: 613,292
8- Berlin airports: 564,928
9- Cologne/Düsseldorf airports: 548,843
10- Amsterdam airport: 423,763

INDIA:
1- London airports: 2,429,572
2- Frankfurt airports: 1,335,370
3- Paris airports: 523,102
4- Brussels airports: 434,167
5- Amsterdam airport: 384,487
6- Munich airport: 242,815
7- Helsinki airport: 136,139
8- Vienna airport: 115,874
9- Manchester airport: 51,701
10- Nottingham airport: 7,818

CHINA:
Mainland China:
1- Frankfurt airports: 1,184,511
2- Paris airports: 1,116,782
3- Amsterdam airport: 747,055
4- London airports: 606,294
5- Munich airport: 396,296
6- Helsinki airport: 307,398
7- Copenhagen airport: 156,238
8- Rome airports: 143,622
9- Stockholm airport: 114,693
10- Vienna airport: 108,251

Mainland China + HK (this includes transit passengers to Oceania):
1- London airports: 2,407,813
2- Paris airports: 1,718,368
3- Frankfurt airport: 1,630,660
4- Amsterdam airport: 1,175,721
5- Munich airport: 571,507
6- Helsinki airport: 468,000
7- Rome airports: 321,589
8- Milan airports: 178,512
9- Copenhagen airport: 156,514
10- Stockholm airport: 114,693
 
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