Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Riga to Frankfurt - Prices of LH, BT and FR

Riga to Frankfurt is the only route from Riga with three competing airlines. Although airBaltic sell some Lufthansa connections – RIX to FRA seems to be at battlefield. airBaltic started this route in September as an important business destination for the connecting traffic but will BT steel Riga to Frankfurt O&D traffic?

Booth LH and BT operate the route daily and with the same type of aircraft, but – as airBaltic 737-500 has more dense seating - BT’s weekly seat capacity is higher.
Ryanair use more distant Hahn airport with is specialized in “illegal” transfers and serving other surrounding communities rather than Frankfurt city. Since BT’s entrance FR is no longer the only alternative to LH high fares (see graph) so the demand may be down (no proof).

As Lufthansa sustain a complex fare system with one-way tickets about the same price of a round trip – the round trip fares in this research is divided by two. So even don’t try to book them – they are imaginary fares. Lufthansa ticket include 20kg of checked-in baggage, booth BT and FR don’t.
The price graph clearly indicates – Ryanair is the cheapest option, then comes airBaltic, then Lufthansa. Variation of LH’s prices is extreme - from €147 to €510. It seems obvious that Lufthansa want to bring traffic to their hub instead of wasting the seats for the short Riga to Frankfurt service by offering more reasonable fares.

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