Ryanair among top 10 least punctual airlines flying out of the UK

A study placed the Irish-based budget airline in eighth place, with an average delay of 21 minutes per flight in 2018.

Ryanair among top 10 least punctual airlines flying out of the UK

Ryanair has made it into the top 10 airlines with the lowest punctuality flying out of UK airports.

A study by the Press Association placed the Irish-based budget airline in eighth place, with an average delay of 21 minutes per flight in 2018.

Vueling Airlines has the worst punctuality, with the Spanish carrier's UK departures 31 minutes late on average, according to analysis of Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) data by the PA news agency.

Thomas Cook Airlines was found to have the second worst performance with flights typically 24 minutes late, followed by Wizz Air (23 minutes), Norwegian Air UK (22 minutes) and Eurowings (22 minutes).

Norwegian Air UK is a British subsidiary of Norwegian Air Shuttle, operating transatlantic flights from Gatwick Airport.

Cathay Pacific Airways is the most punctual airline, with aircraft typically taking off just eight minutes behind schedule.

Aer Lingus was among the most punctual airlines with an average delay of just 11.4 minutes per flight.

The average delay across all flights was 16 minutes.

The ranking features the 43 airlines with more than 2,000 flights from UK airports last year.

Average delay figures take into account every flight that operated, including those that were on time. Cancelled services are excluded from the CAA data.

Strikes by air traffic controllers caused havoc for airlines last summer.

A spokesman for Vueling, which serves several UK airports including Heathrow, Gatwick, Edinburgh and Birmingham, said the low-cost airline's punctuality was "hugely affected" by industrial action in France.

He went on: "There were 22 strike days at Marseille last summer.

"During these strikes, Vueling flights to and from Barcelona and the UK could not fly straight across France but instead flew south of the Pyrenees and into the Atlantic before looping back towards Britain.

"All airlines have been affected by air traffic control issues in Europe, but the location of Vueling's (Barcelona) hub close to Marseille means it has been particularly badly affected."

He added that the airline has taken measures to mitigate against the impact of further ATC issues, such as allocating up to 10 spare aircraft to operate flights during disruption.

Vueling's parent company is International Airlines Group, which also owns British Airways, Aer Lingus, Iberia and Level.

PA & Digital Desk

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