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Australia’s tardiest airline named

You may be reading this from an airport while your flight is delayed, and that’s because about one in four Australian flights are now not taking off or landing on time.

The latest figures from the Bureau of Infrastructure and Transport Research Economics (BITRE) for its domestic on-time performances found Australia’s leading airlines averaged 74.5 per cent accuracy for on-time departures and an average 73.0 per cent for on-time arrivals.

The cancellation rate for the month was 4 per cent. The equivalent figures for February 2023 were 73 per cent for on-time arrivals, 73.7 per cent for on-time departures and 3.9 per cent for cancellations. 

That’s right, it’s slowly getting worse. 

February’s on-time arrivals figures were significantly lower than the long-term average for all routes, which is 81 per cent. 

Bad boy Virgin

And Australia’s worst for on-time arrivals, officially, is … Virgin Australia with 71.5 per cent of flights arriving on time. Followed by the Qantas network at 72.7 per cent. Bonza was the most reliable network with 81.7 of flights arriving on time, followed by Jetstar with 76.1 per cent. 

Qantas’ regional service QantasLink recorded the highest percentage of cancellations at 6.8 per cent, followed by northern Australian operator Skytrans on 4.9 per cent, Qantas at 4.3 per cent, Virgin Australia Regional Airlines at 3.8 per cent, Virgin Australia at 2.8 per cent, Jetstar at 2.6 per cent, Bonza at 2.5 per cent, and Rex Airlines at 2.1 per cent.

It’s been a good couple of months for Rex. It cancelled just 0.6 per cent of flights in January. 

Rex network strategy manager Warrick Lodge recently took a swipe at the large airlines after the January figures were released. 

“Rex never cancels a flight last minute for expediency or for cash flow purposes or to hoard airport slots, and this explains why Rex’s cancellation rate is 600 to 1000 per cent lower than its two larger competitors,” Mr Lodge told The Sydney Morning Herald.

Mildura late again

You are most likely to arrive on time on the Adelaide-Gold Coast route, with an 89.7 arrival on time percentage and the least likely to arrive on time on the Melbourne-Darwin route with an on-time figure of 44.4 per cent. The Mildura to Melbourne route hit its departure slots only 53.2 per cent of the time. 

Cancellations were highest on the Broome-Perth route at 24.3 per cent, followed by the Perth-Broome route at 23.7 per cent, the Perth-Darwin route at 21.1 per cent and the Darwin-Perth route at 19.6 per cent. These routes were affected by industrial action during February in Western Australia.

Are you thinking of travelling to Mt Isa? You are in luck, you are likely to arrive on time 85.2 per cent of the time. At the other end of the scale, bad luck if you are travelling to Mildura, you are likely to arrive on time 59.3 per cent of the time.  

Have you had a flight cancelled recently? What did you do? Why not share your experience in the comments section below? 

Also read: World’s most disappointing tourism attractions named and shamed

Jan Fisher
Jan Fisherhttp://www.yourlifechoices.com.au/author/JanFisher
Accomplished journalist, feature writer and sub-editor with impressive knowledge of the retirement landscape, including retirement income, issues that affect Australians planning and living in retirement, and answering YLC members' Age Pension and Centrelink questions. She has also developed a passion for travel and lifestyle writing and is fast becoming a supermarket savings 'guru'.
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