It’s a statistical fact that the most common reason for flight delays is the late arrival of an aircraft. The root causes for this can be traced back to crew availability, maintenance or even weather conditions.
Take a look at some of the most common reasons for flight delays:
– Weather – Unfortunately, it’s beyond anyone’s control. Bad weather is often one of the biggest causes of flight delays and cancellations. Luckily, our advanced technology allows us to make decisions about whether it’s safe to fly earlier than ever before. The ability to make these decisions early on means that we can help minimise any disruption to your journey.
Let’s face it. Flight delays are annoying. It’s even more frustrating when you’re not sure why your flight has been delayed. I’m here to help explain some of the most common reasons for flight delays.
2. Air Traffic Control
3. Crew Time Out
5. Airport Congestion
According to a report by the International Air Transport Association (IATA), there were a total of 88.2 million minutes of flight delays worldwide in 2005. The average delay per flight was 34 minutes and per passenger was 6 minutes. That’s a lot of time lost!
The main causes of flight delays are broken down into how they affect the airlines, the passengers and the environmnet. These cause can be further categorized as either within or outwith airline control.
Airlines have to coordinate with many different departments and organizations when running their operation. This includes airport authorities, air traffic control, ground handlers, caterers, aircraft and engine manufacturers, government agencies such as customs and immigration, weather agencies, etc… With so many moving parts involved in running an airline you shouldn’t be surprised that things go wrong from time to time!
The most common reason for passenger-related delays is security screening at airports. Every passenger has to pass through security so it only takes a few people holding up the line to add up to a significant delay. Airlines have very little control over this process so it is hard for them to do anything about it if there is a long queue at security before your flight is due
A number of people, including the CEO of JetBlue, have suggested that airlines should offer compensation to passengers whose flights are delayed. But there is a fundamental problem with this idea:
Airlines don’t cause flight delays.
1. A late inbound flight- If a plane coming into your airport is late, it can create a ripple effect that causes other flights to be late. This typically happens when the airline needs to use a smaller plane or reduce the number of flights to get back on schedule.
2. Weather- Even if the weather is good at your departure airport, if there are problems at your connection city or your destination, it can cause delays and even cancellations.
3. Air traffic control- The FAA sets limits on how many planes can fly in and out of an airport each hour. If there are delays getting planes into position, they may need to reduce the number of flights or make them wait longer before takeoff.
4. Schedule padding- Airlines schedule some extra time between flights in case there are problems getting passengers or bags on board. But that extra time can be used up if there are delays earlier in the day for other reasons, causing subsequent flights to be late as well.
5. Crew duty time limitations- Pilots and flight attendants have set schedules that include rest periods so that fatigue doesn’t become a factor during a long flight day. If something goes wrong earlier in the day, they may not have enough time to rest between flights, which could cause
Airport runways are often under repair or construction, especially in the summer months. In order to minimize the impact to travelers, this work is mostly done at night. When your flight is scheduled to land at 5:00am, it is possible that the runway you are scheduled to land on may not be available. This can delay your flight by an hour or more.
Aircraft manufacturers have been building bigger and bigger planes over the years. As a result, airports have had to expand their ramps and taxiways to accommodate these larger aircraft. In many cases, they have simply run out of room!
Runway congestion occurs when there are too many flights arriving at a high-traffic airport during a given time period. Most large airports generally do a good job of staggering arrivals so that all passengers can deplane before the next flight arrives; however, sometimes planes arrive much sooner than expected which causes delays for everyone.
Air traffic controllers do a great job at getting planes in and out of airports safely and efficiently; however, airline schedules rely on accurate forecasts of weather conditions as well as precise estimates of how long each flight will take from gate-to-gate. If something goes wrong with either of these factors, delays will occur.
Many airlines use the
One of the most frequent questions I get from my friends is “Why do airlines make us wait so long for our flights?” The answer is complicated, but it’s rooted in three major problems:
1. The air traffic control system in the United States is outdated and inefficient. It’s based on World War II technology and it needs to be replaced. But that would cost an enormous amount of money, so Congress hasn’t appropriated the funds necessary to do it.
2. Airlines often have too little time to turn planes around at their hub airports, so they sometimes have to sit on the runway waiting for their scheduled departure time to arrive. In some cases planes are delayed because they take off too late and then fall behind schedule. That causes a ripple effect throughout the rest of the airline system, which can result in delays to many other flights.
3. Airlines sometimes don’t give themselves enough time between flights. This is called “scheduling buffer.” If flights leave with a tight scheduling buffer, they’re more likely to be delayed because any flight that arrives even a few minutes late has a domino effect on other flights that follow it.