There are many different airlines spread around the world. Some are very small, and they fly only a limited number of routes. The airline industry is dominated by a few airlines whose base of operations are in Europe and the United States. Based on the amount of revenue they take in, these are the largest airlines in the world as of 2018.


This Germany based airline has seen its revenues surge to almost 43 billion euros this past year. In 2017, Lufthansa transported over 130 million passengers. The company also operates a cargo airline that has demonstrated increasing profitability. Lufthansa flies to over 300 cities in the world in over 100 countries.

American Airlines

This airline’s revenues are just slightly below those of its rival Lufthansa. American Airlines transported about 200 million people last year. This airline takes people to over 350 cities in nearly 50 countries. American Airlines is headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas.

Delta Airlines

Delta Airlines is based in Atlanta, Georgia, and this airline currently deploys a fleet of over 860 aircraft. Over 186 million people flew on Delta last year, and the company took in almost $42 billion in revenue last year.

United Continental Holdings

United Airlines and Continental Airlines merged in 2010 to form this major US airline. This airline has $37 billion in revenue. United is based in Chicago, and the airline and its affiliates fly to over 350 cities every day.

Air France – KLM

In 2004, Air France merged with KLM Royal Dutch Airlines. This merger created the second largest airline company in Europe. Currently, this airline group serves just under 100 million passengers each year, and the airline has a fleet of just over 550 aircraft.

Emirates Group

This is a fast-growing airline that saw its revenue jump by eight percent in the previous year. Emirates is the largest airline flying in the Middle East, and this air carrier travels to over 80 countries utilizing its fleet of 265 aircraft.

International Airlines Group

This airline is the result of a merger of several airlines in western Europe. British Airways, Iberia, and Aer Lingus are the largest airlines in this group. International Airlines Group is based in London, and they fly to almost 270 destinations around the world on a daily basis.