Australia lags behind rest of world when it comes to airline on-time performance

A woman late to work suprised at the time. Running late at the airport
Edited by Travel Weekly


    Cirum has released its findings into the best on-time performance for both airlines and airports for the month of October.

    It probably comes as no surprise that Australian airlines don’t perform too well with none making the top ten best performing. In fact, not a single Australian airline even makes the top ten best-performing for the Asia-Pacific region, let alone globally.

    Delta Air Lines took the top spot from SA Avianca this month with an outstanding on-time performance (OTP) of 90.84 per cent. SA Avianca followed with an OTP of 88.78 per cent, just a slight decline from its performance last month.

    Qatar Airways came in third place this month with an OTP of 87.56 per cent. United Airlines, a new name in the top five rankings, secured fourth place this month with an OTP of 86.31 per cent. United Airlines was followed closely by Aeromexico, with an OTP of 86.08 per cent.

    ANA became the new leader in the APAC region with an OTP of 85.08 per cent, a two-point improvement over the previous month’s performance. JAL retained its position in second place at the same OTP rate as the previous month (83.88 per cent). With an OTP of 83.14 per cent, Vietnam Airlines took the third spot in the APAC region.

    Other airlines in the top ten included Air New Zealand with an OTP of 79.10 per cent, and Singapore Airlines with 77.99 per cent.

    Data from the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development, Communications and the Arts shows the gap between global performance and airline delays in Australia is substantial.

    For September 2023, on-time performance over all routes operated by Jetstar, Qantas, QantasLink, Rex Airlines, Skytrans, Virgin Australia and Virgin Australia Regional Airlines averaged 72.1 per cent for on-time arrivals and 71.6 per cent for on-time departures.

    The Qantas network (Qantas and QantasLink combined operations) recorded 74.8 per cent for on-time arrivals while the Virgin Australia network (Virgin Australia and Virgin Australia Regional Airlines combined operations) recorded 67.6 per cent.

    Qantas achieved the highest on-time arrivals among the major domestic airlines at 71.3 per cent, followed by Jetstar at 69.7 per cent and Virgin Australia at 67.4 per cent.

    Of the regional airlines, QantasLink recorded 77.0 per cent for on-time arrivals, followed by Rex Airlines at 75.5 per cent, Virgin Australia Regional Airlines at 74.1 per cent and Skytrans at 67.7 per cent.

    The Qantas network recorded 74.1 per cent for on-time departures while the Virgin Australia network recorded 67.0 per cent.

    Qantas achieved the highest level of on-time departures among the major domestic airlines for September 2023 at 70.1 per cent, followed by Jetstar at 67.2 per cent and Virgin Australia at 66.8 per cent. Of the regional airlines, Rex Airlines recorded 77.8 per cent for on-time departures, followed by QantasLink at 76.8 per cent, Virgin Australia Regional Airlines at 72.2 per cent and Skytrans at 67.7 per cent.

    When it comes to airports, Salt Lake City International Airport had best on-time performance in the world at 89.36 per cent.

    Los Angeles Airport was 20th with 83.13 per cent.

    Australia’s results vary depending on who you make comparison with.

    Last month, Mount Isa Airport recorded the highest percentage of on-time arrivals with 89.1 per cent.

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