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Announcement, On-Time Performance

Japanese airlines claim top spots as Asia’s most on-time in 2018

January 23, 2019

23 Jan 2019 The industry’s most comprehensive on-time analysis recognises Japan Airlines (JAL) as the Asia-Pacific’s most on-time mainline airline […]

23 Jan 2019

  • The industry’s most comprehensive on-time analysis recognises Japan Airlines (JAL) as the Asia-Pacific’s most on-time mainline airline for the seventh year running, and ANA as the most on-time airline network in the region.
  • Globally, Delta Air Lines is the most on-time mainline airline, and Qatar Airways has been named the world’s best on-time airline network.
  • FlightGlobal’s annual On-Time Performance Service (OPS) Awards ranks airlines based on more than 120,000 flights per day and 600 global sources.

FlightGlobal, incorporating FlightStats, global leader in aviation data and analytics, has named Japan Airlines (JAL) as the most on-time* mainline airline in 2018 in the Asia-Pacific region, in the industry’s longest-running annual On-Time Performance Service (OPS) Awards.

This marks the seventh year in row that JAL has claimed the top spot, with 84.73% of its flights on time. In second place was another Japanese carrier, ANA (84.20%), followed by Singapore Airlines (83.52%).

ANA is named as the Asia-Pacific’s most on-time global airline network**, with 85.25% of its flights on time, followed extremely closely by JAL (85.21%) in second place, with Singapore Airlines (83.52%) in third.

In global rankings, Delta Air Lines is the most on-time mainline airline, with 86.09% of its flights on time – an improvement of 0.19 percentage points on 2017. In second place was Qatar Airways (85.88%) and following closely in third was KLM (85.04%). Qatar Airways is also named as the world’s most on-time global airline network**, with 85.88% of its flights on time. KLM (85.59%) and ANA (85.25%) came in second and third place, respectively.

For the first time in the 10-year history of the awards, the Low-Cost Carrier (LCC) category has been jointly won – by Azul and Iberia Express. The two LCCs both recorded an average of 86.47% of flights on time in 2018.

“The passenger experience is fast becoming a key improvement area for airlines, and being on time is a critical contributor to that experience,” said Christopher Flook, chief executive of FlightGlobal. “The airlines topping the rankings should be immensely proud of this accolade for enabling the millions of passengers that fly with them each year to arrive at their destinations on time.”

“Airlines in Asia face a host of external challenges in terms of disruptions. Though these disruptors can’t be controlled, they can be managed by prudent planning and operations,” said Rahul Oberai, FlightGlobal’s VP Sales in APAC. “APAC carriers have shown a marked improvement in their timeliness, which is critical for their brand reputation.”

The OPS Awards rankings are determined from the analysis of more than 120,000 operated flights per day, along with real-time flight status, departure and arrival data curated from over 600 global sources. The awards have the most stringent and consistent criteria, with flight status coverage on at least 90% of scheduled flights.

Click here for the full on-time performance results and interactive report.



* A flight is considered “on time” if the aircraft arrives at the gate within 14min 59s (less than 15min) of the scheduled arrival time.

** The OPS Awards define an airline network as a system of flights flown by a major airline, but also include the flights that are marketed by the carrier and are operated by its airline partners.


Our categories for OPS Awards are grouped into three areas: Global, Major (by region), and Low Cost Carriers. An award is given for network and mainline operations in each category. Click here for the full methodology and selection criteria.


Minimum Scheduled Flights: (Network: 51,000/ Mainline: 53,000)

Minimum Seat Capacity: (Network: 9 million/ Mainline: 9 million)

Minimum Destinations: (Network: 40/ Mainline: 36)


Minimum Scheduled Flights: (Network: 48,000 / Mainline: 40,000)

Minimum Seat Capacity: (Network: 7 million / Mainline: 6 million)

Minimum Destinations: (Network: 68 / Mainline: 68)

Latin America

Minimum Scheduled Flights: (Network: 103,000 / Mainline: 70,000)

Minimum Seat Capacity: (Network: 16 million / Mainline: 12 million)

Minimum Destinations: (Network: 45 / Mainline: 55)

Middle East & Africa

Minimum Scheduled Flights: (Network: 76,000 / Mainline: 58,000)

Minimum Seat Capacity: (Network: 12 million / Mainline: 10 million)

Minimum Destinations: (Network: 76 / Mainline: 69)

North America

Minimum Scheduled Flights: (Network: 72,000 / Mainline: 66,000)

Minimum Seat Capacity: (Network: 4 million / Mainline: 3 million)

Minimum Destinations: (Network: 84 / Mainline: 82)

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