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A 2018 Guide To The Best And Worst Airports For Punctuality

A 2018 Guide To The Best And Worst Airports For Punctuality

Nothing can compare to a smooth flight. One where you don’t sleep through your alarm, one where you don’t leave your passport in your bedside drawer and most importantly, one where there’s no delays!

It doesn’t hurt to have a little extra time in duty free (or at the bar), so that there’s not even one second where you feel rushed off your feet. But it’s important to know the situation with your airport of choice.

We’ve done all the work for you as the best and worst airports for punctuality have just been revealed. Find out what you need to know below…


Scheduled and charter flights, but not cancelled services, from the 25 busiest airports were examined in this study.

The Press Association, which compiled the departure punctuality ranking, stated that flights across all airports left an average of 15 minutes late.

The Best

Your Top Performers

Heathrow– 11.0 minutes (delayed on average)

Leeds Bradford– 11.3 minutes

Belfast City– 11.3 minutes

London City– 11.6 minutes

Exeter– 11.9 minutes

Bournemouth– 12.3 minutes

Newcastle– 12.8 minutes

East Midlands– 13.3 minutes

Southampton– 13.5 minutes

Southend– 13.5 minutes

Liverpool– 14.0 minutes

Doncaster Sheffield– 14.3 minutes

Glasgow– 15.0 minutes


The CAA said the data allows passengers to “make informed choices about which airports they fly from”.

But a spokesman for the Airport Operators Association said “outdated” airspace infrastructure limits the efficiency of flights.

He said: “Airports are working with air traffic service providers and the government to plan and deliver the necessary changes so everyone can continue to fly with a minimum of delays.”

The Worst

The Ones That Come Last

Luton– 19.7 minutes

Gatwick– 18.9 minutes

Jersey– 18.7 minutes

Durham Tees Valley– 18.6 minutes

Birmingham– 18.2 minutes

Bristol– 17.6 minutes

Belfast International– 16.7 minutes

Manchester– 16.7 minutes

Stansted– 16.7 minutes

Aberdeen– 16.1 minutes

Edinburgh– 15.8 minutes

Cardiff– 15.7 minutes

A Luton airport spokeswoman commented that factors outside its control had an influence on punctuality including air traffic control strikes, late arriving aircraft, bad weather and congested airspace.

Gatwick stated it was doing “everything within its power” to improve the proportion of its flights that depart on time, including using new technology to predict and recover from late running flights, which the BBC reported.


Some of the best airports over the world were revealed, including:

Dubai International, United Arab Emirates (the airport includes zen gardens, boutiques with real nuggets of gold, snooze cubes for sleeping and jazuzzi with spa)

Zurich, Switzerland (the airport includes an observation deck to watch the pilots at work in the cockpit, bikes available to rent in the grounds and special lounges just for the kids)


Taoyuan International, Taiwan (the airport includes art/museum exhibits, a free travel library, free Wi-Fi and themed gates such as Hello Kitty)

Munich, Bavaria (this airport includes over 150 shops, climbing frame, mini golf course and a microbrewery with open air beer garden)



Which is your favourite airport to fly from? Have you been to any of ‘the world’s best airports’? How do you most like to spend your time at the airport? Leave us your comments…

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