Airline punctuality at Britain’s airports has plummeted, with the number of hour-long delays on Ryanair and Easyjet flights doubling in the last five years, according to research by Which?.
It named Stansted as the UK’s worst airport for delays, with 10% of all flights taking off an hour or more late, while Heathrow was best, at 4%. Ryanair saw the worst deterioration in punctuality of any major airline in the Which? survey, with 7.8% of its flights suffering a delay of one hour or more in 2018, compared with 3% in 2014.
Thomas Cook Airlines was worst overall, with 11.5% of its flights delayed, while Dutch carrier KLM was the best.
The budget airlines rejected the findings, saying they were the victims of air traffic control delays, extreme weather conditions and strikes.
But Which? said both airports and airlines had failed to match the rapid growth in the number of flights with the resources needed to handle an increase in traffic.
It analysed 10m flights, and estimated that last year alone 17 million passengers were affected by delays, but most passengers were not entitled to compensation because this is only payable after a three-hour delay.