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Flight Stats
Airline and Airport On-time Performance - Year-end 2009 Report
January 6, 2010
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In this issue .....
Hawaiian, Southwest Best in US in 2009
Asian Airports Best Among the Busiest
Oakland Best Among Top 40 North American Airports
Europe - Binter Canarias, SAS Lead the Way
Japanese Airlines Hard to Beat in 2009
About These Reports
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FlightStats is an airline, airport, and travel information service provided by Conducive Technology Corp. On our Web site at http://www.flightstats.com/, visitors can get flight status, track flights, view on-time performance ratings by flight or by airline, check for current airport delay and weather information, and much more.

FlightStats provides global flight status information and is the definitive source for historical airline performance data. Conducive Technology is also a leading supplier of air travel information services to travel agencies, logistics professionals, airlines, airports and industry analysts.
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Hawaiian, Southwest Best in US in 2009
US airlines finished 2009 with an overall on-time performance rating of 78.73% (flights arriving within 15 minutes of scheduled arrival). This is a measurable improvement over the two previous years when they posted on-time arrival percentages of 75.41% in 2008 and 73.47% in 2007.

Of the 36 airlines we analyzed, the airlines most likely to get you to your destination on time in 2009 and their on-time performance percentages were:

  1. Hawaiian Airlines - 91.76%
  2. Horizon Air - 85.88%
  3. Chataqua Airlines - 84.6%
  4. Shuttle America - 83.68%
  5. Mesaba Aviation - 83.4%

Southwest led the majors closely followed by Alaska.

  1. Southwest Airlines (6th overall) - 82.47%
  2. Alaska Airlines (7th overall) - 82.38%
  3. United Airlines (12th overall) - 80.54%
  4. US Airways (13th overall) - 80.51%
  5. Northwest Airlines (18th overall) - 79.61%
  6. Continental (20th overall) - 77.91%
  7. Delta (21st overall) - 77.84%
  8. Jetblue (24th overall) - 77.2%
  9. American Airlines (28th overall) - 75.7%

Here are some other notable findings:

  • Airline with the highest rate of cancellations: Piedmont at 3.81%
  • Airline with the highest percentage of flights delayed more than 44 minutes: Air Wisconsin at 14.76%
  • Airline least likely to cancel your flight: Spirit Airlines (.002% cancellation rate)
  • Airline least likely to arrive more than 44 minutes late: Hawaiian (1.71% )

You can download the 2009 Year-end Airline and Airport Performance Report below:
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Asian Airports Best Among the Busiest
We looked at 48 of the world's busiest airports to determine their relative efficiency and on-time performance. East Asian airports dominate that list along with Amsterdam's Schipol Airport. Here are the five best performing large airports and their on-time performance percentages.

  1. HND Tokyo, JP - 90.78%
  2. ICN Seoul, KR - 87.43%
  3. AMS Amsterdam, NL - 86.85%
  4. NRT Tokyo, JP - 85.36%
  5. BKK Bangkok, TH - 84.23%

London, New York area airports, and Istanbul offered the least likelihood of an on-time arrival in 2009 with Newark's EWR (65.37%) and Istanbul's IST airport (60.68%) at the bottom of the on-time arrival list.
Notable:

  • Rome's FCO airport had the highest cancellation rate (4.84%).
  • Newark (EWR) also had the highest percentage of flights delayed more than 44 minutes (18.07%).
  • The group average for 2009 was 76.39% on-time arrivals.

You can download the 2009 Year-end Airline and Airport Performance Report below:
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Oakland Best Among Top 40 North American Airports
Oakland (OAK) proved to be the easiest North American airport to reach with an on-time flight in 2009. 86.9% of OAK-bound flights arrived at the gate within 15 minutes of the scheduled arrival time. The top five included:

  1. OAK Oakland, CA - 86.9%
  2. CVG Cincinnati, OH - 84.46%
  3. SLC Salt Lake City, UT - 84.42%
  4. PHX Phoenix, AZ - 84.12%
  5. CLE Cleveland, OH - 84.07%

The 2009 average on-time arrival performance percentage for the top 40 North American airports was 78.05%, compared to 74.69% in 2008 and 71.65% in 2007.

Among the top 40 North American airports, these five were least likely to get flights to the gate on time:

36. PHL Philadelphia, PA - 72.13%
37. JFK New York, NY - 70.45%
38. MEX Mexico City, MX- 70.37%
39. LGA New York, NY - 68.26%
40. EWR Newark, NJ - 65.37%

Worth noting:

  • EWR had the highest percentage of flights delayed by > 44 minutes (18.07%)
  • PHL had the highest cancellation rate (2.6%)

You can download the 2009 Year-end Airline and Airport Performance Report below:
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Europe - Binter Canarias, SAS Lead the Way
Binter Canarias had the best on-time performance record among European carriers in 2009. SAS won the top spot among the majors. The top five performers included:

  1. Binter Canarias - 95.34%
  2. KLM Cityhopper - 90.7%
  3. SAS Norway - 90.54%
  4. VLM Airlines - 89.88%
  5. Tyrolean Airways - 89.7%

Here's how the European major airlines compared:

  1. SAS (6th overall) - 89.11%
  2. KLM (7th overall) - 88.5%
  3. Lufthansa (16th overall) - 83.21%
  4. Air France (28th overall) - 80.52%
  5. British Airways (32nd overall) - 78.79%
  6. Easyjet (37th overall) - 73.48%
  7. Iberia (41st overall) - 67.96%

Worth noting:

  • Aeroflot had the highest percentage of flights delayed > 44 minutes (13.57%)
  • Aegean, Eastern Airways, Meridiana, and Olympic Air had the highest cancellation rates (> 20%)

You can download the 2009 Year-end Airline and Airport Performance Report below:
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Japanese Airlines Hard to Beat in 2009
If you fly to one of the Tokyo airports on one of the following Japanese airlines, you are almost guaranteed and on-time arrival. Japan's airlines and airports seem to be the aviation equivalent of Swiss rail. We compared on-time arrival performance of 40 of the world's largest airlines for 2009. Japanese carriers came in 1,2 and were the only airlines to exceed 90% as their average for on-time arrivals. Europe's SAS and US airline Horizon also made the top five.

  1. Japan Airlines - 90.95%
  2. ANA - 90.37%
  3. SAS - 89.11%
  4. Korean Airlines -88.61%
  5. Horizon Airlines - 85.88%

Worth noting:

  • All Nippon Airlines (ANA) had the lowest percentage of flights delayed more than 44 minutes (1.22%)
  • China's Hainan Airlines had the lowest percentage of cancelled flights (.01%)
  • Air China had the highest percentage of cancelled flights in 2009 (4.07%)

You can download the 2009 Year-end Airline and Airport Performance Report below:
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About These Reports
These on-time performance reports for worldwide carriers and airports are generated from FlightStats Analytics. We track the performance of over 150,000 flights per day, archive the data for analysis and publication, and provide real time flight status to millions of travelers world wide each day.

In other words, no we don't have someone at the US Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) leaking information to us. We gather it ourselves in real time and archive the data for analysis and reporting.

The BTS numbers are usually published a month later than ours, are based upon different data gathering techniques, and built from slightly different data sets.

  • BTS reports only on US airlines and airports. FlightStats gathers data world-wide
  • BTS airline performance reports are based upon data reported by 19 US airlines, 18 of which constitute 1% or more of total domestic scheduled-service passenger revenues. FlightStats reports cover 45 US airlines and are based upon data gather in real time from a variety of sources including the US FAA, airlines reservation systems, direct feeds from airlines and airports.
  • BTS US airport performance reports are based upon information provided by the 32 U.S. airports that account for at least 1 percent of the nation's total domestic scheduled-service passenger enplanements. FlightStats equivalent reports are based upon archived real-time data covering the top 40 (i.e. busiest) North American airports.
  • Both BTS and FlightStats reports include information on the percentage of flights that arrived on time, were cancelled, were diverted. FlightStats breaks down the delays into 3 categories - late (15-29 minutes late at the gate), very late (30-44 minutes), and excessive (> 44 minutes). BTS simply reports that a flight is late (15 minutes or more).
  • FlightStats has more current data based upon real-time reporting. BTS data is published approximately 5 weeks after the close of a month as it relies on the airlines to file historical reports.
  • BTS also reports on baggage issues, passenger numbers, customer complaints and the causes of flight delays. FlightStats does not.

The articles in this issue include links to reports you can download with detailed performance data on the world's 50 busiest airports, US major airline performance, North American airport performance and European carrier performance.

We also track departure performance and can provide many different views into the data. Let us know if you need something in particular.

You may republish any and all data included in this report. We ask only that you attribute the data to FlightStats.com and include a link to http://www.flightstats.com if you publish the data in any form online.

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