Routes World 2023 is set to convene in Istanbul on Sunday with more than 2,500 aviation decision makers meeting to define the future of air connectivity.

Marking its 28th edition, the event will be attended by vice presidents and heads of network planning from more than 260 airlines.

Carriers in attendance include Air France, easyJet, Delta Air Lines, Emirates, IndiGo, Japan Airlines, JetBlue Airways, Qantas, Turkish Airlines and Wizz Air.

According to IATA estimates, over 4.35 billion passengers are expected to travel in 2023. Routes will act as a hub for airlines, airports, and destinations to meet, in recognition of the critical role of the air transport sector in supporting millions of jobs worldwide.

China at Routes

The event will be the first that all of China’s largest carriers will attend following Beijing’s decision to remove most of the remaining Covid-related travel restrictions earlier this year.

Air China, China Eastern, China Southern, Hainan Airlines and Shandong Airlines will be evaluating proposals from airports at the event to ascertain which markets to prioritise in their recovery.

Routes World 2023 will also welcome more than 50 association and airline leaders, government ministers and expert suppliers to participate in the event’s Conference Programme. The line-up of CEOs includes: Turkish Airlines’ Deputy Chairman and CEO, Bilal Ekşi; Pegasus Airlines’ CEO Güliz Öztürk; Royal Jordanian’s CEO Samer Majali.

Istanbul Airport

This year’s event will be hosted by iGA Istanbul Airport. The airport handled some 64 million passengers in 2022, making it the seventh busiest in the world.

Steven Small, director of Routes, said: “We are delighted to bring the global route development community to Istanbul for Routes World.

“The positive impacts of increased air connectivity for a destination are immense and I am confident by hosting Routes World, Istanbul will take advantage of the capacity created by the move to the new airport.”

Selahattin Bilgen, interim CEO of iGA Istanbul Airport, said: “At iGA Istanbul Airport, we welcome everyone in our beloved city, the global cultural centre where modernity and tradition flourish together in harmony.

“We are delighted to be the host of Routes World 2023, a globally renowned event bringing together airlines, airports and aviation stakeholders from around the world.

“This event is a platform to define the future of the aviation industry for years to come, and we are thrilled to be chosen as the centre of it.

“Routes World will be a world-class event and I look forward to meeting with CEOs and other influential figures in the aviation industry, to align on exciting new projects and opportunities of the future.”
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