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Saturday 29 June 2024

Airlines can't stay on schedule; but blame air traffic controllers

Remember how airlines promised improved on-time performances post-Covid.

It isn't happening. But the airlines are blaming air traffic controllers.

On-time air travel performance in Europe last year was one of the worst for many years, the Travel Mole portal reports.

There was a notable increase in delays and costs impacting airlines with millions of passengers disrupted.

The recently-released Performance Review Report (PRR) from Eurocontrol, shows over 25% of flights did not arrive within 15 minutes of their scheduled time.

En-route Air Traffic Flow Management (ATFM) delays in 2023 were the second highest over the past 20 years and exceeded the figure for 2019, even though that year had a higher level of air traffic.

Total ATFM delays in 2023 reached 18.1 million minutes, which is the equivalent of 301,000 hours.

The report suggests inadequate levels of recruitment of air traffic controllers will add to the pressure on Europe’s airspace.

Airlines for Europe (A4E) is calling for a rethink of how Europe’s airspace is managed in order to meet the targets for performance.

Ourania Georgoutsakou, MD of A4E said: “Airspace is a critical infrastructure for Europe and the latest performance review shows that it is creaking at the seams.

"Over one in four flights delayed is simply unacceptable for airlines and their passengers.”

Image: Alvin Niwan, 

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