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The Best and Worst International Airlines

Major International Airlines On-time and Delayed Arrivals & Cancellation Percentage, 2012


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Comparing international airlines is much more apples and oranges than it seems: Without a central governing agency to collect the data, there’s hardly a way to put carriers head to head. Enter FlightStats, which crunches the numbers each year for their Airline and Airport On-Time Performance Service Awards.

Not only does FlightStats determine which airlines are most punctual (arriving to the gate within 15 minutes of scheduled times), but they also look at cancellation numbers, alliance-wide statistics, and more. Plus, they've sliced the data exclusively for us by stacking up all the international data in two handy graphics—a useful tool if you're considering loyalty with a new carier. Take a look at some of the winners here.


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Best Airline Alliance: oneworld (79.55% On-time performance)
Runners up: SkyTeam, Star Alliance
Best Major International Airline: Japan Airlines (90.35% on-time performance)
Runners up: Air New Zealand, All Nippon Airways

Lowest Global Cancellations: All Nippon Airways (0.22% cancellations)
Runners up: El Al Airlines, Emirates

Best North American Major Airline: Alaska Airlines (87.26% on-time performance)
Runners up: AirTran, Delta

Best European Major Airline: LOT Polish Airlines (89.35% on-time performance)
Runners up: Aer Lingus, Finnair

Best South American Major Airline: Azul (80.04% on-time performance)
Runners up: Copa Airlines, Gol Linhas Aereas Inteligentes

Best Asian Major Airline: Japan Airlines (90.35% on-time performance)
Runners up: All Nippon Airways, Korean Air

(The views expressed in this page are for illustration purpose and solely those of the writers.)