On-time performance in March for North American carriers took a downward turn after improving the prior two months.
Average North American airline on-time performance in March was 71.4 percent compared with 75 percent in February, according to Cirium’s monthly report. The only two airlines to show month-over-month improvement were WestJet and Air Canada, the two carriers with the lowest percentages. But Air Canada broke above the 60 percent level for the first time since November 2022.
Delta Air Lines, on top again, was the only carrier to break 80 percent, at 80.9 percent. Southwest dropped from second in February to fifth in March at 73.9 percent and had the largest percentage-point decrease month over month. Alaska Airlines, American Airlines and United Airlines rounded out the carriers above the industry average for the month.
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Both Delta and American (78.2 percent) made the top global on-time performance list, at eighth and 10th, respectively.
The number of North American flights canceled during March decreased nearly 16 percent to 10,722 from 12,745 in February.
Southwest in March had the highest completion factor at 99.5 percent, followed by Alaska at 99.2 percent. American and United tied at 99 percent, with Delta fifth at 98.4 percent.
A flight is considered on time if the aircraft arrives at the gate within 15 minutes of the scheduled arrival time.