Home DESTACADOS The Best And Worst Airports And Airlines In The U.S.

The Best And Worst Airports And Airlines In The U.S.

by Author Contribution
In 2023, an impressive 862.8 million passengers flew on 16.3 million domestic and international flights with U.S. airlines.

By Michael Fisher

In 2023, an impressive 862.8 million passengers flew on 16.3 million domestic and international flights with U.S. airlines, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation. The cancellation rate for those was below 1.2%, the lowest rate in a decade. However, the team at Tradingpedia analyzed monthly on-time performance statistics from OAG and found that a staggering one-fifth of flights operated by American carriers had delays of more than 15 minutes in 2023. Moreover, last year, U.S. airports experienced departure delays of a little over 21% in all flights. Apart from being just a frustration and an inconvenience, flight delays cost businesses and passengers hundreds of millions of dollars.

So, how likely is your flight to be delayed or canceled? It depends on the carrier you fly with and the airport you depart from. We aggregated on-time performance data for the entire 2023 and identified the most punctual airlines and airports in the U.S. We also discovered those that are most likely to delay or cancel your flight.

The best Airlines in the U.S. based on flight delays and cancellations?

We looked at airlines and airports with at least 20,000 flights last year and found that the airline least likely to delay your flight is Delta Air Lines, the oldest carrier in the U.S. and one of the largest airlines in the world. According to our calculations, Delta had the lowest percentage of delayed arrivals out of the 13 major airlines we analyzed. Only 15.6% of its flights did not arrive on time, which is better than the national average of 20.8%. The carrier completed 98.8% of all scheduled flights, having a cancellation rate of 1.2% for the entire 2023.

The best Airports in the U.S. based on flight delays and cancellations?

Data also shows that the most reliable airport in the U.S. is the Juneau International Airport where only 11.28% of departures were delayed last year and another 1.68% were canceled. It is a regional airport in Alaska and one of the smallest on our list. In fact, most of the ten best American airports in terms of on-time performance had less than 50,000 flights in 2023.

Flying in the 21st Century: Cheaper But More Stressful

Gone are the days when travelers dressed up and spent a little fortune on airfares to fly on some of the very few commercial flights available at the time to the public in the United States. As air travel became more popular – and affordable, flights became packed, less comfortable, and more stressful. While flying is the norm in the 21st century, it is also often associated with huge crowds at airports, long delays, and a host of inconveniences from missed connections, lost luggage, and canceled flights.

It is hardly surprising then that so many passengers nowadays view air travel as a stressful, rather than exciting experience. In December 2023 alone, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) received 13,389 complaints from the general public, 10,638 of which were related to the screening of passengers, while 1,321 were about lack of courtesy of customer service.

The TSA, however, does not have customer feedback data related to delays or cancellations and these complaints are likely to be much more. According to the on-time performance statistics we analyzed for the twelve months of 2023 from OAG, 22.11% of the flights arrived late. Of the 8.2 million flights by U.S. carriers we examined, 1.7 million were classified as delayed (i.e. delays of 15 minutes or more). Over 109,000 flights were canceled, a rate of roughly 1.33%.

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