UK airports register record flight punctuality

UK airports have registered the best ever first quarter on-time performance with 84 percent of scheduled flights landing ‘on-time’, the latest CAA figures have revealed.

According to the CAA data, for the three months ended March 31, 2014, overall on-time performance was six percentage points higher than the same period in 2013, making it the best first quarter since records began in 1992. An ‘on-time’ flight is defined as landing/arriving at its destination either early or up to 15 minutes late.

The five biggest London airports – Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted, Luton and London City – registered an overall increase of eight percentage points of on-time flights as a proportion of total scheduled flights, rising from 76% to 84%.

And the five other airports monitored – Manchester, Edinburgh, Birmingham, Glasgow and Newcastle – have seen an overall increase of six percentage points, from 81% to 87% of flights on-time, the CAA said in its release.

Separately, all 10 airports registered an improvement in punctuality. The average delay across all monitored scheduled flights was nine minutes, a reduction of four minutes when compared to the first quarter of 2013.

For scheduled flights, on-time performance increased by four to eight percentage points, with the biggest increase being at Newcastle, which recorded a nine percentage point rise. For charter flights, the overall on-time performance was 76% – an increase of seven percentage points, when compared with the first quarter of 2013, while the average delay fell by five minutes.

The CAA monitored 304,000 scheduled and 10,000 charter passenger flights at the 10 airports for punctuality in the first quarter of 2014. This represents a 2.3% increase in scheduled flights and a 10.5% fall in charter flights compared with the same quarter in 2013.

In the first quarter of 2014, the busiest 75 scheduled international destinations had between 900 and 13,000 flights to and from the 10 UK airports. Of those, Rotterdam recorded the highest on-time performance with 91.7%, and Hannover had the lowest average delay of 5.1 minutes. Flights to and from Dubai achieved the lowest on-time performance with 63.4%, and Delhi had the highest average delay of 28.3 minutes.