Boyd Group: October Airline Schedule Performance Report

EVERGREEN, Colorado. The Boyd Group International Airline Schedule Performance Report for October 2012 reveals that less than two thirds of US flights arrived at or before the time scheduled by the airline system.

Data Aggregated By Airline Brand. The Boyd Group International Report goes beyond the raw data issued by the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, and provides a ranking of the airline brands on which consumers actually purchase travel. The BTS only reports by “certificated carrier.” Since most airline systems are operated by more than one certificated carrier (Delta, for example, has flights operated by Pinnacle and SkyWest, as well as mainline Delta), the raw data does not reflect the performance that consumers actually experience on an airline-by-airline basis. Boyd Group International aggregates on-time performance by the airline brand, including all reporting certificated carriers operating under that brand.

October: Sixteen Percent of Flights Arrived Materially Off-Schedule. The chart below – one of several in the report – ranks carriers by percentage of arrivals in excess of 15 minutes.





While 84% of reported flights arrived within 15 minutes of schedule in October, only 63.5% met the schedule as published by the airline.


In addition, passengers buying tickets on American, United, and Frontier had nearly a one in four chance of arriving in excess of 15 minutes late from the posted schedule. When flights arrive more than 15 minutes off schedule, it means significant numbers of misconnected passengers and bags are inevitable, particularly when some airlines file hub connect times of as little as 35 minutes.

It must be noted that performance at United, US Airways, and JetBlue were significantly affected and hampered by the Sandy storm in early October, which disrupted these airlines’ entire systems.

BTS “On-Time Statistics”Are Anecdotal, Not Complete. In addition to aggregating the data by the airline brands on which consumers purchase tickets, the Boyd Group International report is clear in explaining the shortfalls in the base BTS data and reporting systems.

Incomplete Reporting. The BTS data does not cover all flights. For example, due to size, flights operated by Republic – which is an aircraft provider for several major airline brands – is not reported. Therefore the data for the AA brand – which leases aircraft operated by Republic/Chautauqua – is incomplete.Off-Schedule. Different From “Late.” In reality, even when flights arrive in accordance with published schedules, they are still “late” compared to what the actual flight time should be. It is noted that airlines must add schedule minutes to accommodate the deteriorating air traffic control system, which cannot reliably handle the current traffic volume, particularly in regard to weather issues. Therefore, an “on-time” arrival still may include several minutes added to the schedule for this reason.Domestic Flights Only. There is no data reported for international departures.

The Boyd Group International Airline Schedule Performance Report is generated from Aviation DataMiner™, the most advanced suite of analytical and business intelligence sources available.

The complete Report, which provides not only data by each airline brand, but also a timeline regarding the effects of Sandy, can be downloaded at, and clicking on the On-Schedule Report link.