The worst airports within the UK for flight delays final yr have been ranked.

The typical delay for flights throughout all airports was nearly 20 minutes and 42 seconds, down from 23 minutes and 12 seconds in 2022, when the aviation sector struggled to deal with a surge in demand for holidays following the tip of coronavirus journey restrictions.

The evaluation took into consideration all scheduled and chartered departures from the 22 business UK airports with no less than 1,000 outbound flights final yr. Cancellations weren’t included.

Departures from the Gatwick have been a mean of practically 27 minutes not on time in 2023, in line with evaluation of Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) information by the PA information company.

The airport, which is the second-busiest within the UK, was badly affected by air visitors management (ATC) employees shortages throughout Europe final yr, and repeatedly suffered the identical drawback in its personal management tower.

Gatwick mentioned in a press release it’s “working carefully with our airline companions to enhance on-time efficiency”.

Luton airport had the second poorest punctuality file final yr, with a mean delay of virtually 23 minutes.

In third place was Manchester airport, at practically 22 minutes.

Belfast Metropolis (George Finest) airport had the most effective efficiency, with a typical delay of 12-and-a-half minutes.

Longest common delay for departures from UK airports in 2023 (PA Wire)

Naomi Leach, deputy editor of client journal Which? Journey, mentioned: “It’s clear from these newest figures that hundreds of thousands of passengers continued to expertise unacceptably lengthy hold-ups final yr.

“This can’t be allowed to turn into the brand new regular.”

CAA director Tim Johnson mentioned it’s critical the aviation sector “focuses on resilience” forward of the summer season vacation interval to “maintain passenger disruption to a minimal”.

He added: “The place folks do discover themselves going through disruption, we would like them to be well-informed in regards to the obligation of care that they’re entitled to.”

Julia Lo Bue-Stated, chief govt of Benefit Journey Partnership, a community of impartial journey brokers, mentioned flight disruption is “all the time extremely irritating”.

She continued: “Any delay can have important knock-on results to each leisure and enterprise travellers.

“With hundreds of thousands of Brits set to journey overseas this summer season, it’s important for the UK’s airports alongside all components of the journey eco-system to repeatedly work collectively to make sure the system is as environment friendly as it may be.”

When flights are considerably delayed or cancelled, airways are required beneath client legal guidelines to offer passengers with help resembling refreshments, a method of communication and in a single day lodging if required.

If the reason for disruption is beneath an airline’s management, passengers are additionally due compensation of as much as £520 relying on the size of the delay and the space of the flight.

However air visitors management (ATC) points are usually thought-about to be an “extraordinary circumstance”, that means affected passengers should not entitled to payouts.

Gatwick was the worst airport within the UK for flight delays final yr, an investigation has discovered (Gareth Fuller/PA) (PA Archive)

Gatwick mentioned in a press release: “As probably the most environment friendly single runway airport on the planet, we goal to ship a seamless passenger expertise.

“The vast majority of cancellations are brought on by poor climate, airspace constraints throughout Europe and inefficient third occasion floor operations.

“We’re working carefully with our airline companions to enhance on-time efficiency.

“As well as, we’ve got printed a six-year capital funding programme setting out important enhancements to develop and improve infrastructure and services to construct the resilience of the airport.”

A spokesperson for commerce physique the Airport Operators Affiliation mentioned: “Airports work extraordinarily laborious to minimise delays whereas offering a constructive, secure and safe expertise for passengers.

“These figures don’t present any of the context round working in a world surroundings and don’t give the travelling public a transparent image of how air journey operates.”

Gatwick imposed a brief cap on flights in September 2023 in an try to scale back the variety of short-notice cancellations and delays attributable to employees shortages in its ATC tower.


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