Being on-time is a nice feature in an airline. Late flights are easily one of the most annoying parts of traveling. So, knowing which airlines will get you where you're going at the promised time is no small thing.
FlightGlobal's ninth annual study of more than 99,000 daily global flights has determined that Delta was the world's most on-time airline in 2017. Delta is the first-ever US-based airline to earn the award. Meanwhile, Iberia was crowned the world's most on-time global network.
In 2017, Delta had an 85.9% on-time arrival rate. It also notably canceled only one of 23,000 flights during a nine-day span over Thanksgiving, when you expect delays no matter what method of travel you're using. Iberia's network had a combined 88.9% on-time arrival rate in 2017.
Below are the top 10 airlines for on-time arrival rates in 2017, accord to FlightGlobal's study:
1. Delta Air Lines (85.9%)
2. Japan Airlines (85.6%)
3. All Nippon Airways (83.82%)
4. Qatar Airways (83.64%)
5. Scandinavian Airlines (82.94%)
6. United Airlines (82.85%)
7. TAM Airlines (81.47%)
8. American Airlines (81.38%)
9. Alitalia (81.26%)
10. Qantas Airways (81.03%)
The data was pulled from more than 600 sources and included more than 36 million flights. Flights are considered on-time if they arrive at the gate within 14 minutes of the scheduled arrival time. Passengers can tell if a flight is not on-time by the expert cursing from fellow passengers, travelers impatiently crowding the aisle, and that one dude shaking his head and muttering "unbelievable" as though this is the first late flight since the Wright Brothers.