Airline On Time Performance, 2016 Calendar Year Report

Summary 2016 Calendar Year

For the year ended December 2016, on time performance over all routes operated by participating airlines (Jetstar, Qantas, QantasLink, Regional Express, Tigerair Australia, Virgin Australia and Virgin Australia Regional Airlines) averaged 84.2 per cent for on time arrivals and 85.1 per cent for on time departures.  Cancellations represented 1.7 per cent of all scheduled flights.  The equivalent figures for 2015 were 86.0 per cent for arrivals, 87.0 per cent for departures and 1.6 per cent for cancellations.

The figures for 2016 were above the long term average performance for all routes (82.7 per cent for arrivals and 84.2 per cent for departures). The rate of cancellations was higher than the long term average of 1.4 per cent.

Virgin Australia achieved the highest on time arrivals among the major domestic airlines at 86.7 per cent, followed by Qantas at 86.4 per cent, Tigerair Australia at 81.6 per cent and Jetstar at 76.2 per cent. QantasLink was the best performing regional airline for on time arrivals at 85.0 per cent, followed by Regional Express at 84.4 per cent and Virgin Australia Regional Airlines at 84.3 per cent. The Qantas network (Qantas and QantasLink combined operations) recorded 85.7 per cent for on time arrivals while the Virgin Australia network (Virgin Australia and Virgin Australia Regional Airlines combined operations) recorded 86.6 per cent.

Virgin Australia also achieved the highest level of on time departures for 2016 at 88.4 per cent, followed by Qantas at 88.0 per cent, Tigerair Australia at 83.1 per cent and Jetstar at 73.3 per cent.  The regional airlines were led by Regional Express at 87.5 per cent, followed by Virgin Australia Regional Airlines at 86.8 per cent and QantasLink at 85.7 per cent. The Qantas network recorded 86.8 per cent for on time departures while the Virgin Australia network recorded 88.3 per cent.

QantasLink had the highest percentage of cancellations (2.5 per cent) during 2016, followed by Jetstar and Virgin Australia (both at 1.9 per cent), Virgin Australia Regional Airlines (1.3 per cent), Qantas (1.2 per cent), Tigerair Australia (0.9 per cent) and Regional Express (0.6 per cent).

Airlines’ on time performance varies across the routes they serve. Individual route data by specific airline for 66 routes are shown on pages 9-21.

Of the 66 routes which met the criteria for on time performance reporting for all 12 months in 2016, the Melbourne-Hamilton Island and Townsville-Cairns routes had the highest percentage of on time arrivals (94.1 per cent) and the Adelaide-Alice Springs route had the highest percentage of on time departures (95.2 per cent). The Port Macquarie-Sydney route had the lowest percentage of on time arrivals (70.5 per cent) and the Sunshine Coast-Melbourne route had the lowest percentage of on time departures (67.8 per cent). 

Cancellations were highest on the Brisbane‑Moranbah and Moranbah-Brisbane routes at 6.2 per cent, followed by the Canberra-Sydney route at 4.8 per cent, the Sydney-Canberra route at 4.4 per cent, the Melbourne-Sydney and Sydney-Melbourne routes at 4.0 per cent and the Tamworth-Sydney, Karratha-Perth and Gladstone-Brisbane routes at 3.3 per cent.

Mount Isa Airport recorded the highest percentage of on time arrivals (93.9 per cent) and Newman Airport recorded the highest percentage of on time departures (93.3 per cent). Armidale Airport recorded the lowest percentage of on time arrivals (72.9 per cent) and Sunshine Coast Airport recorded the lowest percentage of on time departures (68.7 per cent). These figures only refer to reported routes and do not cover all flights at these airports.

Table 1. Total Industry On Time Performance for the year ended 31 December 2016
 SectorsArrivals On TimeDepartures On TimeCancellations
ScheduledFlownNo.%No.%No.%
Jetstar 86207 84570 64424 76.2 61971 73.3 1637 1.9
Qantas 110498 109149 94340 86.4 96036 88.0 1349 1.2
QantasLink 124753 121675 103399 85.0 104271 85.7 3078 2.5
Regional Express 74239 73792 62277 84.4 64604 87.5 447 0.6
Tigerair 26400 26151 21342 81.6 21730 83.1 249 0.9
Virgin Australia 148959 146200 126796 86.7 129233 88.4 2759 1.9
Virgin Australia Regional Airlines 7955 7852 6622 84.3 6814 86.8 103 1.3
All Airlines 579011 569389 479200 84.2 484659 85.1 9622 1.7
Qantas - all QF designated services 235251 230824 197739 85.7 200307 86.8 4427 1.9
Virgin Australia - all VA designated services 156914 154052 133418 86.6 136047 88.3 2862 1.8

Figure 1. Total Industry Arrivals and Departures On Time by month from December 2011

Figure 1. Total Industry Arrivals and Departures On Time by month from December-2007

Figure 2. Total Industry Cancellations by month from December 2011

Figure 2. Total Industry Cancellations by month from December-2007