Published on Friday, November 8, 2013

Flight delays and cancellations down this summer

Flight delays and cancellations dropped this summer, with particular improvement from Monarch Airlines.

Although Monarch operated almost 2,500 additional flights in 2013, it managed to cut the number of affected flights by more than half to 301 flights, or 1.2% of the total.

The performance of the UK's seven largest airlines from April 1 to October 31 was studied by EUclaim for flight compensation solicitors Bott & Co.

EUclaim looked at how many flights were affected by a cancellation or delay of more than 180 minutes.

Overall there were 6,600 affected flights during summer 2012, compared to 6,239 in summer 2013, a reduction of 5.47%.

Thomas Cook had the highest percentage of delays and cancellations (2.51%), but a spokesman claimed it doesn't cancel flights and works hard to minimise any delays that sometimes unfortunately occur.

"This summer, more of our flights departed within the industry standard 15 minute measure than for over five years, with over 200 less flights arriving over three hours late in summer 2013 than in summer 2012," he said.

Meanwhile, Ryanair had the lowest percentage at 0.51%.

Compared to 2012, Monarch, Thomas Cook, Jet2 and BA saw a drop in the number of affected flights, whilst easyJet remained stable.

Ryanair and Thomsonfly both saw an increased number of delays and cancellations.

The data also revealed the worst destination for each of the top seven airlines (see the table below).

"What is clear from the data is that European Commission Regulation 261/2004 is working and as a result airlines are improving in reducing the number of flights that are delayed or cancelled," said Bott & Co technical legal manager Coby Benson.

"I hope that airlines continue to ensure that they operate on time and with minimal inconvenience to air passengers."

The table below shows the percentage of cancellations and delays in 2012, followed by the percentage of cancellations and delays in 2013, and the worst affected destinations in 2013 for each airline.

Airline                          2012     2013   Worst destination
Monarch Airlines          2.92%  1.20%  Palma de Mallorca
Thomas Cook Airlines 2.84%   2.51%  Tenerife
Jet2                             1.72%   0.64%  Alicante
British Airways            1.41%   1.21%  New York
Thomsonfly                 0.81%   0.90%  Arrecife
EasyJet                       0.61%   0.61%  Palermo
Ryanair                       0.34%   0.51%  Las Palmas

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  • Delays

    If Monarch were more inclined to pay 'legitimate' delay claims they would struggle to survive. Does nobody realise that strangling airlines with the EU's ridiculous delay claims just makes tickets more expensive? When was the last time anyone claimed for a delayed or cancelled train or a bus stuck in traffic? There are numerous third party elements involved in delayed flights, usually ground handling staff, air traffic control, airport ground movement control or airport terminal management, none of which are controlled by the airline, yet the airline is expected to pay up when a flight is delayed. Does the EU think airlines delay their flights on purpose and so should be punished? A flight delayed is almost always because of one of the above third parties, or it's technical. If it's technical it is usually because the airline is observing very strict despatch safety rules regarding the technical condition of the aeroplane. So certain engineering procedures need to be followed. Maybe the passengers would rather get airborne without those safety requirements satisfied. People whinge about rising ticket costs. NEWSFLASH: with fuel duty, green levies, passenger duty and delay claims, combined with French (usually) air traffic strikes, it's a wonder there are any airlines left.

    By Charles Johnson, Wednesday, April 15, 2015

  • Delays

    Whilst not wishing to question the EU Claims study their results do not seem to be in total accord with the FlightOnTime website see where Monarch seem to come bottom on both schedule and charter flights. In any event a lot of the 'damage' has already been done and whilst carriers such as Monarch are starting to improve their punctuality their delay history is still a matter of record. Taking this airline as a prime example - if they were more inclined to accept legitimate delay claims it would improve public perception significantly.

    By Harry Cole, Friday, November 8, 2013

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