Flight delays & cancellations down in October

Along with October’s leaves, fewer delays and flight cancellations descended upon the country. FlightStats says last month’s song was significantly sweeter than September’s – this despite the early snowstorm that blanked the Northeast in October.

FlightStats says a full 81.16 percent of the flights flown by this nation’s top 43 airlines were on time in October, this compared to 79.47 percent in September and 75.09 percent in August.

Cancellations were down measurably during October compared to the previous month. Airlines axed 9,304 of their flights during the year’s tenth month, compared to 10,168 in September. That’s 1.1 percent of total scheduled slights compared to 1.25 percent.

So why’s this matter? Just this: transitional months often see more flight delays, when late summer’s heat gives way to autumn’s cooling breezes, or winter’s cold is swept away by spring’s warmth. Those are the periods given to stormier weather – a fact not lost on savvy fliers who plan their vacations ahead of time.

What airports saw the fewest, and most delays, in August? FlightStats says the least delayed airports in the country this past month were:

  • Salt Lake City, where 91.14 percent of the flights were on time.
  • Seattle/Tacoma, with an 89.89 percent on-time departure rate.
  • Portland International, where 89.86 percent of flights left the gate on time.
  • Minneapolis/St. Paul, with an 89.55 percent on-time mark.
  • Memphis International, where 89.24 percent of the flights departed on time.

The worst performers for the month?

  • Miami International, with 59.04 percent on-time departures.
  • Dallas/Ft. Worth, where 63.33 percent of the flights got away on time.
  • New York Kennedy, which racked up a 71.36 percent on-time record.
  • New York LaGuardia, where 73.56 percent of the flights pushed back on time.
  • Chicago O’Hare, where 73.91 percent of the scheduled flights left the gate on time.

What’s your favorite—and least favorite—connecting US airport? Tell us, and tell us why.

Story by Jerry Chandler

(Image: William Warby)