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Flying from Gatwick Airport and on EasyJet, passengers suffered the longest average delays during summer getaways. BBC Data Unit report




Those splendid people at the BBC Data Unit have come up with an interesting set of figures relating to the delays we all experience from time to time at Airports.

Admittedly their analysis has to be treated as a snapshot, and has the data from the last two summers but not this year, when a barrage of extra problems, seemingly never-ending BA strikes and new EU Biometric passport and thumbprint entry systems are currently having an adverse effect.

But if you are using Gatwick Airport and flying on EasyJet you have according to the BBC Data Unit, in  summers gone by, suffered the worst of both worlds, and the longest average delays during summer getaways. 

They looked at UK departure and arrival figures, collected by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), during the last two summers and the crunched figures show just how bad the situation is and how long-suffering UK passengers have become.


It is probably a good idea for passengers caught up in any delay to remember they are, in certain circumstances due for compensation, just quote EC261/2004 on any claim as the airline legally owes a 'Durty of care' and this can extend to Hotels and subsistence.
The data set shows that one in every five flights were delayed by more than 30 minutes.  Using EasyJet passengers had an average delay of 24 minutes, and those leaving from Gatwick waited 27 minutes.

 Both claimed they appeared at the top of the delay list partly as a result of having among the biggest number of flights.

The performance analysis, by the BBC's data unit, is based on the last two years of CAA data for all flights from or to UK airports during June to August.

EasyJet clocks up the longest average delay at 24 minutes (when taking all summer flights into consideration), whether delayed or not, for the busiest airlines in June to August for the last two years.


Aer Lingus delays were half, at 12 minutes.

 Airline Average Delay
Expressed in Minutes
League Table



EASYJET AIRLINE COMPANY LTD 24
THOMAS COOK AIRLINES LTD 19
BRITISH AIRWAYS PLC 18
THOMSON AIRWAYS LTD 17
JET2.COM LTD 16
MONARCH AIRLINES 15
RYANAIR 15
BA CITYFLYER LTD 14
FLYBE LTD 13
AER LINGUS 12
 

The BBC tackled EasyJet, who responded: "EasyJet operates the largest number of flights of any UK airline, flying over 78 million passengers per year. In 2017, EasyJet will operate 33% more flights than in 2011 with less than 0.8% delayed by more than three hours.

 "In fact, despite a number of adverse external factors like increasingly congested airspace, particularly in the London area, and record numbers of air traffic control strikes, over the last year, EasyJet has actually reduced the proportion of flights delayed by more than three hours.


 "We work hard to minimise disruption and fully comply with all relevant regulations."
 

Turning to Airports, the BBC Data Unit has come up with some interesting trends, likely to be examined by the industry in depth.

 The airport in the UK that has the longest average delay per outbound flight was Gatwick.


The data reveals that travellers were less likely to experience departure delays at smaller UK airports.

LIST SHOWING THE AVERAGE DELAY PER OUTBOUND FLIGHT  FOR ALL JOURNEYS IN THE TWO SUMMERS' DATA PER UK AIRPORT
 

Airport average delay in mins

 GATWICK 27
LUTON 24
JERSEY 21
BELFAST INTERNATIONAL 20
EDINBURGH 18
BIRMINGHAM 18
MANCHESTER 17
GLASGOW 17
STANSTED 17
BRISTOL 16
CARDIFF WALES 16
DONCASTER SHEFFIELD 16
SOUTHAMPTON 16
HEATHROW 16
SOUTHEND 15
LIVERPOOL (JOHN LENNON) 15
ABERDEEN 14
NEWCASTLE 13
EAST MIDLANDS INTERNATIONAL 13
LONDON CITY 13
EXETER 12
BOURNEMOUTH 12
DURHAM TEES VALLEY 11
LEEDS BRADFORD 10
BELFAST CITY (GEORGE BEST) 10
 

Having digested the data a spokesperson for Gatwick Airport said it had more flights to Europe than any UK airport and was impacted disproportionately by events on the continent.

He said the airport was calling on UK and European authorities to accelerate plans to increase the efficiency of UK and European airspace.

 "We recognise the inconvenience that delays cause to our passengers and we will continue to do everything possible to prevent them from occurring," he said.


 "We operate the world's busiest and most efficient single runway airport but, over recent years, Gatwick has been disproportionately affected by issues beyond our control. These include repeated strike action by French, Greek, Spanish and Italian air traffic controllers and airport employees, prolonged bad weather, and heavily congested airspace above parts of Europe and London.


 "Gatwick has made it a priority to address punctuality and, in partnership with our airlines and ground handlers, we are already seeing the benefits of a new wide range of measures that have been implemented to improve punctuality."


 Travellers flying from the EU or on European airlines do have a right to compensation See EU Directive EC261/2004. But the process is complicated and time consuming. Payments range anywhere from Zero to €600 per ticket, but the process is time consuming.
 

JULIAN BRAY +44(0)1733 345581, Journalist & Broadcaster, Aviation Security & Airline Operations Analyst/expert, ... Travel & Holiday Guru www.aviationcomment.com,  ... http://www.freelancedirectory.org/user.php?user=8121  ... www.freelancedirectory.org?name=Julian.Bray.aviation.comment,   ... Aviation / Travel / Maritime & Cruise Industries, NUJ, EQUITY, LIVE ISDN LINK, Broadcast ISDN COOBE ++44 (0)1733 345020 ... SKYPE: JULIAN.BRAY.UK e&oe Old faithful NOKIA: 07944 217476

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