- Rex was the most reliable airline in July, with the highest on-time arrivals and departures and the lowest level of flight cancellations.
- Despite high fares, a significant number of flights in July arrived or departed more than fifteen minutes beyond the scheduled time, and 4% of all flights were canceled, indicating a need for improvement in delivering what the industry promises.
Aviation seems fixated on recovering to 100% of pre-COVID traffic levels, and generally, most of the global industry is on the final stretch of that journey. But what about passenger satisfaction, reliability, on-time performance and delivering a service that matches the exorbitant fares they are charging?
Australia’s Bureau of Infrastructure and Transport Research Economics (BITRE) monitors the on-time performance of the nation’s domestic airlines, Qantas, Jetstar, Rex, Skytrans and Virgin Australia, and produces a publicly available report for all to see. As one who waits expectantly each month for the report to arrive it is becoming increasingly frustrating to find that the industry is delivering service well below long-term averages.
How the individual airlines are performing
Australia’s airlines do a lot of things very well, and all five of these airlines have different levels of complexity to deal with daily. This is why long-term averages for the whole sector can cast a shadow over all operators, and while they all have room to improve some are simply doing better than others, which is why it’s important to look at each individually.
In July Rex operated the most on-time arrivals with 74.5%, followed by Skytrans (71.9%), Qantas (71.5%), Jetstar (68.1%) and Virgin Australia (59.2%). For departures, Rex led with 77.4% leaving on time, compared to Qantas (71.2%), Skytrans (69.9%), Jetstar (66.3%) and Virgin Australia at 59%.
For most passengers, the worst disruption of all is when your flight is…