Bonza Tops On-Time Performance in February

A Bonza Boeing 737 climbs out after takeoff.
Photo Credit: Bonza

The Australian Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics (BITRE) has released airline performance data for February 2024.

This analysis reveiews BITRE’s report to reveal not just overall performance, but also the airlines leading the pack when it comes to punctuality.

February 2024 Performance

How On-Time Performance is Measured

Understanding how on-time performance is measured is crucial for interpreting the BITRE data effectively. Here’s a breakdown of the key metrics:

  • Focus on Scheduled Times: On-time performance hinges on comparing an airline’s actual arrival or departure times against their published schedules. This means an airline can’t necessarily “pad” their schedules to artificially inflate their on-time performance metrics.
  • The 15-Minute Window: For a flight to be considered on-time, it must arrive or depart within 15 minutes of its scheduled arrival or departure time. This window acknowledges minor delays that can occur due to unforeseen circumstances.
  • Gate-to-Gate Focus: On-time arrival is measured based on the aircraft arriving at the gate, not touching down on the runway. This ensures a consistent metric that reflects the time passengers actually disembark.
  • Cancelled Flights Count: Cancelled flights are not considered on-time and negatively impact an airline’s overall performance score.
Photo Credit: MDRX via Wikimedia Commons.

Based on the latest BITRE data for February 2024, here’s a breakdown of the top Australian airlines for on-time arrivals and departures:

Arrivals Performance

  1. Bonza: The newcomer airline, Bonza, took the top spot with a noteworthy 81.7% on-time arrival rate.
  2. Jetstar: Budget airline Jetstar followed closely behind Bonza at 76.1% on-time arrivals.
  3. QantasLink: Qantas’ regional subsidiary, QantasLink, secured the third position with 74.5% on-time arrivals.

Departures Performance

  1. Bonza: Once again, Bonza dominated the on-time departure rankings with a strong 81.7% departure rate.
  2. Rex Airlines: The regional carrier secured the second spot for on-time departures at 76.3%.
  3. Skytrans Airlines: Queensland-based regional Skytrans achieved a respectable 76.1% on-time departure rate.
Source: BITRE data February 2023
Photo Credit: Bonza

While the average on-time arrival rate for February sat at 73.0%, some airlines consistently exceeded expectations.

The newcomer airline, Bonza, surprised the more established players by taking the top spot for both on-time arrivals (81.7%) and departures (81.7%).

Following closely behind Bonza for on-time arrivals were established players like Jetstar (76.1%) and QantasLink (74.5%).

The on-time departure rankings mirrored the arrival results, with Bonza once again dominating (81.7%).

Rex Airlines (76.3%), a regional carrier, secured the second position, followed by the smaller regional airline, Skytrans (76.1%).

These airlines, particularly the regional carriers, might benefit from operating in less congested airspace compared to major hubs.

Maksym Kozlenko, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Variations Across Routes

The data reveals significant variations in on-time performance depending on the specific route. Passengers flying between Adelaide and Gold Coast enjoyed the best experience, with on-time arrival and departure rates exceeding 89%.

Conversely, those travelling between Melbourne and Darwin faced significant delays, with only 44.4% of flights arriving on schedule. Similarly, Mildura to Melbourne flights saw the lowest on-time departure rate at 53.2%.

Mickydee2066, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Factors Affecting On-Time Performance

Factors influencing on-time performance can be complex and include weather conditions, air traffic congestion, operational issues, and airline scheduling practices.

For instance, routes with higher traffic volume might experience more delays due to airspace congestion, while those in geographically challenging locations could be impacted by adverse weather conditions more frequently.

Here are some additional points to consider:

Major Airlines: While not ranking at the top in February, Qantas and Virgin Australia are still major players with extensive route networks.

Regional Focus: The top performers for arrivals and departures in February were primarily regional airlines, which might benefit from less congested airspace compared to major hubs.

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By Len Varley - Assistant Editor 5 Min Read
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