Here are the World’s Most Punctual Airlines (Global Top 20 + Regional)

On-time performance remains one of the critical quality attributes of airlines. That's why we did some analysis on airlines' performance. Here's an overview of the top players when it comes to punctual airlines.

The Most Punctual Airlines and why we Look at 2019

For many years, Hawaiian Airlines was the king of on-time performance and led the airlines’ punctuality list. However, that picture changed in 2019, and the U.S. carrier is no longer among the Top-3 most punctual airlines.

But we don’t want to spoil too much! With this blog post, we deliver a first-class overview of the world of airlines’ on-time performance. Before we dig into the details, you may ask why we take a look at 2019’s number? That’s pretty easy: Due to the pandemic 2020 with its grounded aircraft, canceled routes, and closed airspace does not provide any value when looking at the on-time performance. And frankly speaking: Although punctuality is important, airlines had to tackle other challenges in 2020.

So here’s what to expect with this post if you want to jump to a section directly.

Overview of Contained Rankings

Most Punctual Airlines: Here’s the Global Top 20

Garuda Indonesia, worlds most punctual airline
Garuda Indonesia, World’s most punctual airline

Garuda Indonesia represents the world’s most punctual airline for the first time — with a fantastic result of ~95% on-time flight. That’s a fantastic result. Moreover, from an overall point of view, Asian carriers dominate the Top 20. Eight out of 20 most punctual airlines are based in Asia. Within the Top 10, Asian airlines represent even more than 50%.

Most punctual airlines according to world regions
Most punctual airlines according to world region.

Let’s have a look at the details. But, first, here are the complete results.

RankAirportCountryPunctualityFlights
1Osaka InternationalJapan97,0%4,227
2Nagoya ChubuJapan96,6%4,227
3KagoshimaJapan95,7%4,227
4Osaka KansaiJapan95,4%4,227
5SapporoJapan93,1%4,227
6Tokyo HanedaJapan91,7%4,227
7OkinawaJapan91,6%4,227
8ChennaiIndia91,6%4,227
9BrisbaneAustralien91,6%4,227
10Tokyo Narita Japan91,4%4,227

Most Punctual Mega Airlines

Mega airlines are the big players with some hundred aircraft. Usually and quite naturally, they have slightly lower punctuality due to complex network structures. The winner and most punctual airlines are LATAM Airlines from Chile, with a punctuality of 86.41%. However, although ranked in the list of Top 20, many airlines in this list show miserable performance with some 70% or even 60% punctuality.

Most punctual mega airlines according to world region

Here are the complete results of the most punctual mega airlines!

RankAirportCountryPunctualityFlights
1Osaka InternationalJapan97,0%4,227
2Nagoya ChubuJapan96,6%4,227
3KagoshimaJapan95,7%4,227
4Osaka KansaiJapan95,4%4,227
5SapporoJapan93,1%4,227
6Tokyo HanedaJapan91,7%4,227
7OkinawaJapan91,6%4,227
8ChennaiIndia91,6%4,227
9BrisbaneAustralien91,6%4,227
10Tokyo Narita Japan91,4%4,227

Top 20 Low-Cost Carriers

For low-cost carriers, on-time performance reflects one of the most crucial aspects of their business model. Therefore, all low-cost airlines ranked in the Top-20 most punctual low-cost airlines show an on-time performance of more than 75%. With eight airlines, Asia, again, delivers a solid performance. North America, South America, and Europe are quite equally represented.

most punctual low cost airlines
Most punctual low-cost airlines according to world region

Here are the complete results of the most punctual low-cost airlines!

RankAirportCountryPunctualityFlights
1Osaka InternationalJapan97,0%4,227
2Nagoya ChubuJapan96,6%4,227
3KagoshimaJapan95,7%4,227
4Osaka KansaiJapan95,4%4,227
5SapporoJapan93,1%4,227
6Tokyo HanedaJapan91,7%4,227
7OkinawaJapan91,6%4,227
8ChennaiIndia91,6%4,227
9BrisbaneAustralien91,6%4,227
10Tokyo Narita Japan91,4%4,227

Most Punctual Airline According to World Regions

Besides the overall list, we also put together the most punctual airlines according to different world regions. So check the below list to find the top players in your region!

North America

Unsurprisingly, U.S. carriers dominate the list of most punctual airlines in North America. However, we didn’t expect to see only one Canadian airline among the Top-10.

RankAirportCountryPunctualityFlights
1Osaka InternationalJapan97,0%4,227
2Nagoya ChubuJapan96,6%4,227
3KagoshimaJapan95,7%4,227
4Osaka KansaiJapan95,4%4,227
5SapporoJapan93,1%4,227
6Tokyo HanedaJapan91,7%4,227
7OkinawaJapan91,6%4,227
8ChennaiIndia91,6%4,227
9BrisbaneAustralien91,6%4,227
10Tokyo Narita Japan91,4%4,227

South America

The list of most punctual airlines in South America is exciting. But, unfortunately, there’s almost a 20% difference between the top airline (Copa Airlines) and Caribbean Airlines, ranked #10.

RankAirlinesCountryPunctualityFlights
1Osaka InternationalJapan97,0%4,227
2Nagoya ChubuJapan96,6%4,227
3KagoshimaJapan95,7%4,227
4Osaka KansaiJapan95,4%4,227
5SapporoJapan93,1%4,227
6Tokyo HanedaJapan91,7%4,227
7OkinawaJapan91,6%4,227
8ChennaiIndia91,6%4,227
9BrisbaneAustralien91,6%4,227
10Tokyo Narita Japan91,4%4,227
11RocklandUSA91,2%4,227
12Minneapolis/St PaulUSA90,7%4,227
13LimaPeru90,6%4,227
14SantiagoChile90,5%4,227
15Edmonton InternationalCanada90,3%4,227
16BoiseUSA90,1%4,227
17Detroit MetropolitanUSA89,4%4,227
18Salt Lake CityUSA89,4%4,227
19CuritibaBrasil89,4%1,435
20PortlandUSA89,4%5,324

[rp4wp]


Europe

Europe’s list somehow surprised us. With Azerbaijan Airlines and Aeroflot, there are two Eastern European airlines that lead the list. Moreover, with Air France, only one of the three big airline groups is represented in the list of Europe’S most punctual airlines.

RankAirlineCountryPunctualityFlights
1Osaka InternationalJapan97,0%4,227
2Nagoya ChubuJapan96,6%4,227
3KagoshimaJapan95,7%4,227
4Osaka KansaiJapan95,4%4,227
5SapporoJapan93,1%4,227
6Tokyo HanedaJapan91,7%4,227
7OkinawaJapan91,6%4,227
8ChennaiIndia91,6%4,227
9BrisbaneAustralien91,6%4,227
10Tokyo Narita Japan91,4%4,227

Asia

As already mentioned, Asian carriers show a very strong on-time performance. For example, with Garuda Indonesia and Skymark, two airlines achieved an on-time performance above 90%.

RankAirlineCountryPunctualityFlights
1Osaka InternationalJapan97,0%4,227
2Nagoya ChubuJapan96,6%4,227
3KagoshimaJapan95,7%4,227
4Osaka KansaiJapan95,4%4,227
5SapporoJapan93,1%4,227
6Tokyo HanedaJapan91,7%4,227
7OkinawaJapan91,6%4,227
8ChennaiIndia91,6%4,227
9BrisbaneAustralien91,6%4,227
10Tokyo Narita Japan91,4%4,227

Middle East & Africa

The Middle East and African airlines show a very diverse picture when it comes to airline punctuality. With Safair, a smaller carrier achieved an on-time performance above 90%. However, most of the carriers have average punctuality of 70% – 80%

RankAirlineCountryPunctualityFlights
1Osaka InternationalJapan97,0%4,227
2Nagoya ChubuJapan96,6%4,227
3KagoshimaJapan95,7%4,227
4Osaka KansaiJapan95,4%4,227
5SapporoJapan93,1%4,227
6Tokyo HanedaJapan91,7%4,227
7OkinawaJapan91,6%4,227
8ChennaiIndia91,6%4,227
9BrisbaneAustralien91,6%4,227
10Tokyo Narita Japan91,4%4,227

World Region Comparison

As an additional analysis, we calculated the average punctuality of each world region’s top 10. With average punctuality of 87%, it once more shows the dominance of Asian carriers. European carriers follow almost 83%, whereas North American, South American, and MEA airlines hover around 80%.

Punctuality comparison according to world regions

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Source: Data shown in this blog post is based on OAG’s Punctuality League 2020

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About the author

Benjamin Walther

CEO, Frankfurt

Benjamin is Information Design's CEO and a proven content-maniac. Besides running a successful business and developing pioneering ideas, he's dedicated to writing blog posts and creating content.

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