It may not be possible to anticipate or prevent a flight delay, but for anyone interested in being an informed traveler, there are write-ups like this one from SmarterTravel, which summarizes an AirHelp report on the U.S. airports that saw the most flight disruptions in 2018. The number of “flight disruptions,” which includes both flight delays and cancellations, has never been higher than it was last year per AirHelp. These 10 U.S. airports contributed more than the rest:
- Chicago O’Hare: 115,900 disrupted flights last year
- Dallas/Fort Worth: 75,600 disrupted flights
- Atlanta: 75,400 disrupted flights
- Charlotte: 61,700 disrupted flights
- Newark: 61,300 disrupted flights
- Los Angeles: 60,700 disrupted flights
- Denver: 59,100 disrupted flights
- San Francisco: 51,500 disrupted flights
- New York’s JFK: 50,800 disrupted flights
- Boston: 50,100 disrupted flights
It’s important take these numbers in context, as at Chicago O’Hare (ORD), where SmarterTravel notes that “construction probably made things worse last year, but Chicago’s lousy winter weather reliably boosts delays each year.”
Additionally, not all U.S. airports serve the same number of total flights (in 2018, Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson was the busiest airport in the world for the 21st year in a row). The percentage of total flights that are disrupted may therefore be more telling than the total, as travel blogger Asher Ferguson wrote last year in a great post grading U.S. airports on their overall performance. Accounting for delays, cancellations, custom wait times, and more, Asher gave these 10 U.S. airports the worst grades:
- JFK (New York City): F
- EWR (New York City/Newark): F
- LGA (New York City): D
- ORD (Chicago): D
- MIA (Miami): D
- SFO (San Francisco): D
- MCO (Orlando): D
- BOS (Boston): D
- PHL (Philadelphia): C-
- IAH (Houston): C-
Read Asher’s full post to see how he arrived at the grades above. And if you’ve had consistently good or bad experiences with a U.S. airport, please share in the comments below!
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