Wednesday , 28 September 2022

World’s most delayed and punctual airports

Based on 2008 data sampling by, a list of the most delayed and the most punctual airports in the world, by on-time arrivals, and on-time departures.

Most delayed arrivals airports.
India tops the list with three of its major cities in the top five. I was stunned to see our much beloved Bengaluru International Airport in this dubious list.

Worst arrival rank: 1
Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport (BOM), Mumbai, India
Percentage of on-time arrivals: 49.95%

For the second year in a row, India’s busiest airport, tops the list as the world’s most-delayed airport in terms of arrivals. About 58% of its late arrivals in 2008 were delayed by 30 minutes or more, according to FlightStats sampling of the airport’s flights. In November, the airport opened a new taxiway to reduce the wait time for landing aircraft.

Worst arrival rank: 2
Indira Gandhi International Airport, (DEL), New Delhi, India
Percentage of on-time arrivals: 50.89%

A sampling of the airport’s flights shows that nearly 60% of its delayed flights were late by more than 30 minutes. In October, a third runway, one of the longest in Asia, became fully operational.

Worst arrival rank: 3
Mohammed V International Airport (CMN), Casablanca, Morocco
Percentage of on-time arrivals: 53.83%

The airport, run by the Moroccan Airports Authority (ONDA), gets a low grade for on-time arrivals. More than 60% of its flights sampled by FlightStats in 2008 were at least 30 minutes late. Departures weren’t much better: 64% left on time.

Worst arrival rank: 4
Bengaluru International Airport (BLR), Bangalore, India
Percentage of on-time arrivals: 60.16%

A massive drop in performance occurred due to the chaos following the opening of the new Bengaluru International Airport. Airport operator, BIAL, spokesperson, says, many of the delays are at origin airports. This is partially correct, since, when compared to fellow private greenfield airport, Rajiv Gandhi International (RGIA), at Hyderabad, which has similar traffic patterns, which has better on-time performance. From personal experience, I can attest to significant improvement in performance since opening. I am certain 2009 will be much better and we will not see BIA in this dubious list.

The winter fog, however, has repeatedly exposed the lack of a robust and needed Cat II or higher ILS system at the airport. As an example, as per Flightstats data, on 7th January, BIA managed a poor 54% and 23% on-time departure and arrival, when compared to 67% and 63% at RGIA. The lack of flight on-time performance predictability, aggravates passenger dis-satisfaction, especially when the distance of the airport from the city, is added. It also has an negative impact on the precious domestic departure terminal space.

BIAL must address the Cat II ILS requirement, before the onset of the next winter season, in order to achieve the needed levels of passenger satisfaction, and avoid needless expense in terminal expansion.

Worst arrival rank: 5
Orio al Serio International Airport (BGY), Bergamo, Italy
Percentage of on-time arrivals: 60.55%

Orio al Serio, the smallest of the five airports, serves budget carriers to Bergamo, and nearby Milan. In 2008, 55% of delayed arrivals sampled by FlightStats were less than 30 minutes late. However, only 60% of its flights departed on time as well.

Most delayed departures airports.
The top five most delayed airports airports were far more diversified geographically.

Worst departure rank: 1
Beijing Capital International (PEK), Beijing, China
Percentage of on-time departures: 47.86%

As the city hosted the Olympics, with the world’s largest terminal, BCIA once again holds the dubious distinction of being the worst airport for on-time departures. 45% departures were delayed by 30 minutes or more, according to a sampling of the airport’s flights.

Worst departure rank: 2
Manchester Airport (MAN), Manchester, United Kingdom
Percentage of on-time departures: 49.11%

Northern England’s main airport had about 48% of its delayed departures late by at least 30 minutes, according to a sampling of flights.

Worst departure rank: 3
Venice Marco Polo Airport (VCE), Venice, Italy
Percentage of on-time departures: 53.59%

About 50% of its late flights in 2008 were late by at least 30 minutes, according to FlightStats’ sampling of flight information. One unique feature of Venice’s airport: You can get there by boat.

Worst departure rank: 4
Nice Côte d’Azur Airport (NCE), Nice, France
Percentage of on-time departures: 56.31%

The airport is the third busiest in France, serving 10.4 million passengers in 2007.

Worst departure rank: 5
Leonardo da Vinci-Fiumicino (FCO), Rome, Italy
Percentage of on-time departures: 57.83%

It can take 30 minutes or more to reach Rome’s main airport from the city center, about the same time, more than 50% of departures were delayed according to FlightStats’ sampling of the airport’s flights.

Most punctual airports
The best on-time airports in the world. Tokyo leads the pack, with a clean sweep 1 and 2. I was surprised to see that neither Singapore’s award winning Changi airport, or any of Germany’s, or Switzerland’s airports, countries knowns for their punctuality and efficiency, making the top five.

1. Haneda Airport, (HND), Tokyo, Japan: 90.0%
Even though it handles primarily domestic traffic, Haneda is the fourth busiest airport in the world, moving more than 65 million passengers in 2006. The older of the two airports around Tokyo, Haneda holds the record for on-time departures (93.3 percent), while nearly 87 percent of commercial flights arrived on time in 2007, making it the most punctual airport for both arrivals and departures (90 percent) in the world.

2. New Tokyo International Airport, (NRT), Narita, Japan: 84.2%
Haneda’s sister airport Narita opened in 1978 to take over most of the international passenger traffic to and from Japan. It has an on-time arrival rate of 82 percent; on-time departures are 86 percent, and is ranked number two overall (84.2 percent) in the world for punctual performance

3. Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport, Taipei (TPE): 80.3%
The airport’s sprawling second terminal opened in 2000, enabling TPE to move 22 million passengers in 2006. In 2007, 82 percent of Taoyuan’s flights left the tarmac on time; of those, less than four percent were classified “excessively late,” or delayed 45 minutes. Factoring in its 78 percent on-time arrivals, Taoyuan is practically tied with Kingsford Smith International in Sydney with an overall on-time performance rate of 80.3 percent.

4. Kingsford Smith International Airport, Sydney (SYD): 80.1%
With 30 million passengers in 2006, Kingsford Smith is the busiest and the oldest airport in Australia. Its on-time departures and arrivals are almost even, or 79.3 percent and 81 percent, respectively, with an average wait time of about 40 minutes. With an overall on-time performance rate of 80.1 percent, Kingsford Smith is nearly tied with third place winner Taiwan Taoyuan International.

5. Hong Kong International Airport (HKG): 79.7%
Voted “Airport of the Year” in 2007 by London-based air transport research center Skytrax, the ten-year-old airport is the second busiest in Asia. It boasts on-time departures of 81.1 percent; on-time arrivals of 78.3 percent, giving it a cumulative score of 79.7 percent.

Sources :
Forbes – Most delayed airports
Forbes – Most punctual airports

About Devesh Agarwal

A electronics and automotive product management, marketing and branding expert, he was awarded a silver medal at the Lockheed Martin innovation competition 2010. He is ranked 6th on Mashable's list of aviation pros on Twitter and in addition to Bangalore Aviation, he has contributed to leading publications like Aviation Week, Conde Nast Traveller India, The Economic Times, and The Mint (a Wall Street Journal content partner). He remains a frequent flier and shares the good, the bad, and the ugly about the Indian aviation industry without fear or favour.

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