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I was playing around with Flightradar24 today and noticed three large planes leaving from Frankfurt, Germany, to Seoul Incheon within a few minutes of each other:

  • OZ 542, 17:35, Airbus A380
  • KE 530, 17:35, Boeing 777
  • LH 712, 17:40, Boeing 747-8

Three FRA-ICN flights right after one another

All large-capacity aircraft, all from different companies, all departing Germany in the late afternoon to arrive at Seoul at noon tomorrow.

Just out of curiosity: why would airlines choose such a timing? Arriving at midday does not look so overly attractive that everyone would need to compete for it. If there is very high demand for the route, why would the airlines choose to compete in that way instead of going for, say, an hour's spacing to catch different connecting flights? What's in it for them, business-wise?

marked as duplicate by phoog, Nean Der Thal, David Richerby, JonathanReez Mar 24 at 22:33

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    Out of personal experience, long haul flights arriving at mid-day is the best jet-lag friendly flights. Perhaps that why airlines choose these timings. Usually people tend to book a flight arriving a day earlier when attending businesses after a long haul flights. The airlines I work for has almost all of its long haul flights arriving at mid-day.. – Nean Der Thal Mar 24 at 21:14
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    I just looked at hte load factors on those flights, they are all very good - so thats why three airlines operate pretty much the same flight, because they can. They can fill the aircraft and make money. – Moo Mar 24 at 22:48
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There can be many reasons:

  1. There are no airport slots available which match both departure and arrival airports and the time between.

  2. Airplane is used further to an another destination at arrival (i.e. it has only short layover in Seoul) or airplane is comming from somewhere (i.e. it has short layover in frankfurt and then fly to soul).

  3. There is high demand between both cities.

  4. Planing for such long-haul flights is made months or even years ago by airlines and it is not easy to change these planes suddenly while keep in mind that airlines keep such plans very secret until they are rolled out.

  5. @Nean Der Thal - Out of personal experience, long haul flights arriving at mid-day is the best jet-lag friendly flights. Perhaps that why airlines choose these timings. Usually people tend to book a flight arriving a day earlier when attending businesses after a long haul flights. The airlines I work for has almost all of its long haul flights arriving at mid-day.

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