To finish off our multi-part analysis of the world’s top cargo carriers in 2016, and to give you some good weekend viewing, here is a series of videos of the carriers at the top of the list. If you wish to read the full analysis, Part I is here, Part II is here, and Part III is here. Now, roll camera!
FedEx was, by far the world’s busiest cargo carrier in 2016, for both domestic and total cargo. Here’s film of the heart of the company’s operation, the World Hub in Memphis:
Dubai-based Emirates was, once again, the leading carrier of international cargo, and second in total cargo:
UPS combined its big US domestic traffic with its international operations to show up as the third-busiest carrier by total traffic. Like FedEx, the heart of its operation is its main hub, the Worldport in Louisville:
Like Emirates, Hong Kong-based Cathay Pacific carries no domestic cargo, but its big international business put it in fourth place overall.
Trying to determine the fifth-busiest carrier by total traffic is tricky. If you combine all the cargo flown on the airlines DHL Express either owns or is a partner in, you could say the honor belongs to DHL. Or, you could just as easily say, based on the combined traffic of the three airlines under the Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings umbrella, that AAWW is the fifth-busiest cargo operation in the world. Rather than arguing about it, we’ll show both. Here’s a beautiful clip of an Atlas Air 747-8F taking off from Miami:
And here’s a look at DHL’s main European hub in Leipzig:
But why stop at 5? Particularly when there is a great video of an MD-11F flight from Frankfurt to Nairobi, operated by the sixth-busiest carrier, Lufthansa. It’s almost a full hour, and narrated by the crew.