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The phenomenon of low-cost airlines is relatively recent in the airline industry and it was firstly introduced by Southwest Airlines set up in 1067 and the only American airline that has been consistently profitable for the last thirty years It took much more time to see the first low-cost no-frills European airline Ryanair in 1991 which emulated the Southwests budget model We went to look at Southwest It was like the road to Damacus This was the way to make Ryanair work Michael OLeary Chief Executive Ryanair The low-cost model became so popular among passengers Budget carriers have gained an important market share In fact On latest official estimates no frills operations already accounted for some 30 of domestic US passengers numbers by last summer and should account for more than 20 of total passenger miles within North America In Europe too the summer schedules suggest that no-frills sector will take close to 20 of traffic This success is motivated by the low ticket prices which can be achieved by maximising cost reductions The airlines low-cost model is based on high seating density high daily aircraft utilisation a single aircraft fleet simplified boarding procedures the use of secondary airports elimination of in-flight catering direct booking from internet etc In essence the successful innovation which these carriers introduced into Europe was the provision of easily accessible scheduled short-haul services at very low unrestricted fares Ryanair and Easyjet are the two most important low-cost airlines in Europe Both of them dominate two-thirds of the European Low-cost airline market Their success is not just consequence of their reduction-costs policy they have implemented new technologies in their operational and distributional systems such as online booking which is easy and there are financial incentives to make it more attractive than the telephone or a travel agent AirTran easyjet jetBlue Ryanair Southwest and others benefit from this cheap distribution Ryanair now takes well over
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