Cirium’s aviation analytics report reveals a 65% increase in flight cancellations in Europe, using data from March 2023. The report, which is updated monthly and called the Global On-Time Performance Report, suggests that as the summer season progresses, these figures are expected to continue to rise.
According to Cirium’s report, the number of flight cancellations in Europe rose from 8,713 in February 2023 to 14,405 in March 2023. None of the UK airlines made it to the top 10 list of the most punctual carriers in Europe.
The report ranked Austrian Airlines as the most punctual carrier with 88.62% of its flights arriving on time, followed closely by LOT Polish Airlines with 88.32%.
Other airlines such as ITA Airways, Finnair, and Iberia also made it to the top five with over 80% of their flights being punctual, indicating that they were less affected by flight cancellations in Europe.
As flight cancellations continue to increase in Europe, could the ongoing strikes by air traffic controllers (ATC) in France be a contributing factor? Ryanair, the Irish low-cost carrier, has recently criticized the ATC strikes, calling attention to what they view as hypocrisy in the industrial action.
Ryanair’s CEO, Michael O’Leary, has been advocating for overflights to be protected during these strikes and has intensified pressure on the European Commission to take action. O’Leary stated that the strike action has already caused over 1,000 flight delays.
Ryanair has launched a petition urging Ursula von der Leyen, the President of the EU Commission, to safeguard overflights and keep the skies of the European Union open during air traffic controller (ATC) strikes. This action comes in response to the high number of flight cancellations caused by the strikes.