June On-Time Rates The Worst On Record For Australia’s Airlines

Australia’s domestic airlines recorded their worst on-time performance in June since recording commenced in 2003. Australian Government statistics now out reveal across the five major carriers – Jetstar, Qantas, QantasLink, Regional Express (Rex), Virgin Australia, and Virgin Australia Regional Airlines (VARA), on-time arrivals averaged 63% in June and on-time departures averaged 61.9%. The average cancellation rate for June was 5.8%.

Qantas Group airlines were the worst on-time performers in June

An aircraft doesn’t have to leave from or arrive at the gate exactly on-time to be counted as on-time. If a plane arrives at or departs from the gate within 15 minutes of the designated time, that’s counted as on-time. So before Australia’s Bureau of Infrastructure and Transport Research Economics (BITER) starts collecting data, there is some leeway built into the system.

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Qantas recorded the lowest on-time arrival rate in June, with only 59.4% of its 19,909 domestic flights arriving within 15 minutes of the scheduled arrival time. Low-cost Qantas subsidiary, Jetstar, recorded the worst on-time departure rate, with only 55.7% of Jetstar’s 6,779 flights in June departing within 15 minutes of the timetable departure time.

BITER says these are the worst monthly averages since they started collecting the data in 2003. BITER also notes that the April 2022 and May 2022 averages are now the second and third worst recorded since 2003.

“This month’s figures (June) were impacted by weather-related events, congestion (sectors flown approaching levels recorded prior to COVID-19), and other COVID-19-related issues,” says a BITER media statement.

The Qantas Group of airlines performed in the worst in Australia’s domestic on-time stakes in June. Photo: Getty Images

Virgin Australia Group airlines do little better

Another high-profile Australian airline, Virgin Australia, fared only slightly better than the Qantas Group airlines. Virgin Australia mainline and its VARA offshoot recorded a June average on-time arrival rate of 61.8% and an average on-time departure rate of 59.8%. BITER also reports that the Virgin Australia airlines had an average cancelation rate of 5.55% in June, while the Qantas Group airlines had an average monthly cancelation rate of 6.87%.

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On Wednesday, The Australian newspaper reported that 609 Virgin Australia flights were delayed by more than one hour in June. Across at Qantas, 39% of all flights landed between 15 and 60 minutes late. Jetstar was the worst offender for seriously overdue flights – but that’s hardly surprising news for any regular Australian flyer.

Virgin Australia had a better on-time performance rate in June than the Qantas Group airlines – but only just. Photo: Getty Images

Rex outshines its competitors in the on-time stakes

There’s unusual silence but probably some smug smiles inside the Regional Express bunker about the latest data. In terms of raw flight numbers, Rex operated the fewest flights in July (5,971), but Rex recorded an average on-time arrival rate of 80% and average on-time departures rate of 82.7% in June. Rex’s cancelation rate was just 0.7%. It is the best set of numbers collected from any of the airlines in June.

Rex also did better than the rest in May. At the time, Rex Deputy Chairman John Sharp was moved to say, “Rex treats its customers with respect and decency; we don’t cancel flights en masse, and we don’t lose truckloads of our passenger’s luggage. “

In a statement regarding June’s numbers, a Qantas spokesperson said, “Our performance this month has been impacted by a big spike in COVID-19 cases for our operating crew, as well as the severe weather in New South Wales. “

Last week, Qantas Domestic and International CEO Andrew David said the airline was working hard to overcome labor and operational challenges. But the Qantas executive warned delays and cancelations were an industry-wide problem and suggested passengers should expect “a few more bumps along the way“before the situation normalizes.

Source: BITER

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