Actual Time of Arrival flights arriving gate, arrivals table at an airport

Top UK Flight Routes Falling Behind Schedule

When summer rolls around, everyone gets excited about going on holiday to cool places far away. But, getting from dreaming about your trip to actually stepping foot on a beach or in a city can get tricky because flights don’t always leave or arrive on time. A big look into how flights in the UK have been doing shows us that some flights are often late while others surprisingly get you there earlier than expected. This info is super useful if you’re planning to go on a trip soon.

The previous year saw a significant uptick in domestic flights within the UK, totaling over 1.9 million, a notable increase of 12.67% from 2022. Yet, despite the burgeoning demand, the specter of delays looms large, with a YouGov report from the summer of 2022 highlighting a pervasive lack of confidence among travelers regarding on-time departures and arrivals.

Analyzing over 250 flight routes from 20 major UK airports, Esendex’s Delay to Departure Report found that the UK’s most delayed flight is from Leeds Bradford to Lawica, Poland (Poznan). With an average scheduled arrival time of 11:51 AM and an average actual arrival time of 12:27 PM, passengers face an average delay of 36 minutes.

UK passengers on longer haul flights can also expect delays with the second most delayed flight on average being Birmingham International to Dubai, with an average delay of 30 minutes.

Passengers in the Midlands keen for a weekend in Paris can also expect delays as the UK’s third most delayed flight route operates from East Midlands Airport to Paris – Orly Airport with an average delay of 28 minutes.

UK’s top 10 most delayed flight routes

  1. Leeds Bradford Airport to Lawica, Poland (36 minutes)
  2. Birmingham International Airport to Dubai, UAE (30 minutes)
  3. East Midlands Airport to Paris Orly, France (28 minutes)
  4. Edinburgh Airport to Belfast City, Northern Ireland (27 minutes)
  5. Manchester Airport to Lisbon, Portugal (25 minutes)
  6. London Gatwick to Milan Malpensa, Italy (20 minutes)
  7. Bristol Airport to Guernsey, UK (20 minutes)
  8. Bristol Airport to Edinburgh, Scotland (19 minutes)
  9. Bristol Airport to Porto, Portugal (18 minutes)
  10. Belfast International to Glasgow, Scotland (17 minutes)

Conversely, the journey from London Heathrow to Delhi stands out as a beacon of efficiency, often delivering passengers to their destination 35 minutes ahead of schedule.

This trend of early arrivals extends across various routes, including Belfast to Frankfurt and Manchester to Prague, underscoring the potential for unexpectedly swift journeys amidst the broader narrative of delays.

UK’s top 10 early arrival flight routes

  1. London Heathrow to Indira Gandhi International – India (35 minutes)
  2. George Best Belfast City Airport to Frankfurt – Germany (35 minutes)
  3. Manchester Airport to Prague – Czech Republic (33 minutes)
  4. Liverpool John Lennon Airport to Iasi – Romania (21 minutes)
  5. London Stansted to Milan Malpensa – Italy (20 minutes)
  6. Bristol Airport to Belfast International – Northern Ireland (16 minutes)
  7. London Heathrow to Newark Liberty – New York (15 minutes)
  8. London Heathrow to JFK International – New York (14 minutes)
  9. Liverpool John Lennon Airport to Krakow – Poland (14 minutes)
  10. London Heathrow to Dublin, Ireland (13 minutes)

London Airports dominate 10 of the 22 flight routes passengers are most likely to get to their destinations on time. Stansted to Portugal, London City to Berlin and Luton to Edinburgh are just a few flight routes passengers can expect a punctual arrival.

Passengers flying from Birmingham International Airport may also see an on-time arrival with flights to Belfast International, Malaga and Charles de Gaulle Paris all touching down on time.

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