Statistics for the 2023 & 2024 Europe Inflight Catering market trends, created by Mordor Intelligence™ Industry Reports. Europe Inflight Catering trend report includes a market forecast to 2029 and historical overview. Get a sample of this industry trends analysis as a free report PDF download.
Market Trends of Europe Inflight Catering Industry
The Bakery and Confectionery Segment is Expected to Dominate the Market During the Forecast Period
The bakery and confectionery segment dominates the European inflight catering market. It is expected to continue its dominance over the market during the forecast period as passengers from the region prefer bread and other baked items in most of their dining compared to the other regions.
There was a notable rise in domestic and intra-Europe travel in 2021, with a total market share capturing more than 60%. This shift in operations changed the average flight duration from 45 to 60 minutes. In such short flights, changes in guest preference led to increased demand for bakery and confectionery items. Among bakery products, sweet and sour bread, flavored croissants, and cheese confectionaries witnessed the highest market share.
However, some airlines in the region are converting complementary services into retail services, which may help the airlines increase their revenues and mitigate their pandemic losses. For instance, in December 2021, Lufthansa began to charge passengers in economy and premium economy on long-haul flights for mid-flight snacks and liquor as part of its recovery plans. Earlier in 2021, the airline removed free snacks and drinks for economy class passengers on short-haul routes to support onboard retail service. The introduction of new snacks and sweets on the menu is anticipated to propel the growth of the market.
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The United Kingdom is Expected to Witness Significant Growth During the Forecast Period
According to the Advance Passenger Information (API) and Border and Immigration Transaction Data (BITD), United Kingdom air arrivals were 28.60 million in 2020 and 22.84 million in 2021. Though air arrivals decreased by 20.1% in 2021 compared to 2020, however, during the second half of 2021, air arrivals increased by approximately 88% compared to 2020.
As the aviation industry in the country recovers gradually, major airlines like British Airways and EasyJet are increasing their global connectivity with the introduction of new destinations, which is expected to bring new menus onboard aircraft. Airlines in the country are looking to improve their food offerings based on season and flight destination. Partnering with star chefs is helping them modify dishes without incurring high costs. In this regard, in October 2021, Virgin Atlantic introduced its new autumn menu options and reintroduced onboard favorites across all its cabins, including new meal, beverage, and snack options.
Major companies are investing significantly to strengthen their presence in the United Kingdom. For instance, in March 2022, dnata, a global ground services provider, was appointed to manage easyJet's inflight retail services across the airline's extensive network. Under the contract, the company will deliver an onboard retail program and advanced solutions for the airline and support it further to enhance its retail range onboard and customer satisfaction. Such developments are expected to help the growth of revenues from the country during the forecast period.
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