12 OCTOBER 2015
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Heathrow continues to rank highly among world airports in terms of connectivity but its dominant position in Europe is threatened by developments at Istanbul, says a new study.
The OAG Megahubs Index, which ranks airports in terms of connectivity, puts Heathrow at 13th in the world. It is the largest Megahub in Europe but falls outside the global top 10 as US Megahubs continue to grow.
However, the index also indicates that the combined power of Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted, with their collective connectivity for self-connecting passengers travelling between low-cost carriers, rivals major US hubs such as Chicago O’Hare and Chicago Midway.
The major threat to Heathrow, which the study notes is a ‘constrained airport’, is from Istanbul, whose Ataturk airport is one of many placing an emphasis on connectivity in an effort to drive increased local traffic, including trade and cargo routes to the city.
The index says Atatürk, at 29th in the top 50, is the fastest-growing Megahub, with four times the number of connections, or more than 100,000 more, than its busiest day five years ago.
‘With construction under way of a major new airport, Istanbul is likely soon to enter the top 10 Megahubs Index and will certainly usurp Heathrow in Europe,’ the study adds. www.oag.com/sites/default/files/OAG-Megahubs-Index-2015.pdf
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