U.S. airlines appear to have found the cure for chronic delays: operating fewer flights.
As they parked aircraft and shrank domestic operations last fall, American and United Airlines significantly improved the rate at which they delivered passengers to destinations as scheduled, new federal data show.
After posting the worst record for delays in November 2007, Chicago-based United finished fourth best one year later among 19 carriers. About 86 percent of United’s flights were on time in November versus 76 percent during the year-earlier period, according to data released Wednesday by the Department of Transportation.
Ft. Worth-based American improved its results from second worst for tardy arrivals in November 2007 to seventh best a year later.
The industry’s overall arrival performance was much improved in November, aided by generally good weather during the busy Thanksgiving travel period and far less congestion in the skies.