Wait here: Utair delays less often than other airlines, Rossiya good not at charter flights

The ranking of airlines' punctuality in 2018

Wait here: Utair delays less often than other airlines, Rossiya good not at charter flights Photo: Maksim Platonov

According to the data received by the analytical service of Realnoe Vremya, 39 Russian airlines delayed 18,200 regular flights in 2018. The figure at first glance seems huge, but it is — about 2% of all flights carried out by these airlines. Moreover, the probability that a flight is delayed decreases with the increase in the number of flights of the airline.

In the top by delays — problematic regionals

In total, the airlines that delayed at least one flight performed about 883,700 regular flights. The maximum share of delays accounetd for Yakutia airline — 12,5%, and the largest nominal number of delays — for the country's largest airline Aeroflot – 2,700 times. Let us note, however, that under the delays here is not meant any late departure, but namely significant deviations from the schedule, after which airlines are required to at least begin to provide passengers with drinks — that is, more than two hours.

39% of all delays of regular flights of Russian airlines last year were 2-3 hours. Another 21% fell on very long delays — more than six hours (after this time at night the airline is obliged to provide a hotel — in the afternoon this period is increased to eight hours). Almost the same number — 20% — were flights delayed for 3-4 hours, 12% — for 4-5 hours, and 8% — for 5-6 hours.

The absolute leader in the percentage of delayed flights, as already noted, was Yakutia airline: out of 12,700 flights performed by it, 1,580 were delayed. And the bulk of these flights, or rather — a third, was delayed for more than six hours. Let us note that at the end of the year, the airline faced the prospect of limitation the validity of the operator's certificate: after the airline's plane rolled out of the runway in Yakutsk, the Federal Air Transport Agency announced an incomplete compliance with safety requirements, and from 5 November Yakutia was banned to perform internation flights.

The biggest nominal number of delays accounted for the largest airline in the country Aeroflot — 2,700

The second place in delays with a much more modest result of 8,4% was taken by Royal Flight airline (until 2014, called Abakan Avia). Although, it had a very small number of flights — only 250. At the same time, 52% of the delays were for a period of two to three hours. The company is considered affiliated with Turkish OTI Holding, which also includes the tour operators Coral Travel and Sunmar.

The top five delays also include the operator of business aviation RusJet (it performed 13 flights, one of which was delayed for a period of two to three hours), AZUR Air associated with the tour operator Anex Tour (113 out of 1,600 flights delayed — a third of them for a period of two to three hours), as well as Saratov Airlines — 198 out of 2,900 flights delayed, more than a third of them — for six or more hours. The airline was revoked the license of the operator — as a result its loss exceeded $1 billion.

Larger carriers were also included in the list of ten most non-punctual airlines. For example, Nordstar airline, part of Norilsk Nickel, which performed 13,000 flights, delayed 841 of them (31% of them — not much, for a period of two to three hours, but almost the same — for a period of more than six hours), due to which it was the seventh. Before it, by the share of delayed flights — Alrosa airline of the same group of companies: 615 out of 9,700 flights delayed (mainly for 2-3 hours), and Gazprom Avia round out the top 10 — 406 out of 7,100 flights delayed, basically the delay was for a period of two to four hours.

Fly in time — fly with large airlines

Curiously, the list of the most punctual airlines almost entirely consists of large carriers. Least amount of delays in percentage, for example, was performed by the airline Utair — only 644 out of 78,100 flights delayed, or 0,82%. Most of them were insignificant — for 2-3 hours. Such delays — 37%. However, another 27% of the delayed flights (172) departed by more than six hours later.

The second by punctuality was the member of Aeroflot group – Rossiya airlines. 678 out of 68,100 of flights were delayed, or 1%. The delay time is similar to Utair's, but there is a greater imbalance in favour of delays for 2-3 hours — 39%. The delays for more than six hours — 25%. The third with almost the same indicator was Aeroflot itself. It had 1,01% of delayed flights. Out of 273,700 flights performed (the largest figure among all airlines) the delayed were 2,764. Let us note that in comparison Rossiya, there an even greater percentage of delays falls on the delay of 2-3 hours — 45%. The second place — the duration of delays of 3-4 hours (20%).

The fourth largest percentage of delays belong to one more carrier from the group of Aeroflot airline — Pobeda low-cost airline. 420 out of 39,400 flights were delayed – 1,07%. In general, the delays were 2-3 hours — 35%, and 20% — from 4 to 5 hours. Nordavia — regional airlines rounds out the top five. 120 out of 10,500 flights were delayed — or 1,15%, including 41% — for 2 to 3 hours. In 2017, it was reported about plans to create an alliance owned by Sergey Kuznetsov Nordavia with the previously owned Red Wings (transferred to the leasing company Ilyushin Finance, part of the United Aircraft Corporation, on account of debt repayment for aircraft leasing).

The top ten most punctual includes the second largest by the number of flights airline of Russia — S7. It is represented by two legal entities. Siberia was in the sixth by punctuality — in 2018 it performed 99,200 flights – 1,388 were delayed, or 1,4%. 42% of the delayed flights took off 2-3 hours later than the scheduled time, another 22% — 3-4 hours later. Another airline brand S7 — Globus — was the ninth in the list of the most punctual: it has performed 28,900 flights, 495 out of which were delayed, or 1,71%. 45% of these flights were delayed for 2-3 hours and another 20% — for 3-4 hours.

420 out of 39,400 flights of Pobeda were delayed – it is 1,07%

Charter flights: the chances of being late are twice as great

In the case of charter flights, the situation is somewhat different. There were just nine airlines that did not delay a single flight. The total number of flights here, however, is much less than in the case of regular flights — 31,400, and the average share of delays was 4,4% — this is twice more than regular flights. In total, 1,370 flights were delayed for more than two hours.

Mainly charter delays ranged from two to three hours — such was 32%. Slightly less — 27% of the delays were for more than six hours. The third place by delays — the period from three to four hours, they accounted for 22%. Another 13% of delayed flights took off 4-5 hours later than scheduled, and 7% — for 5-6 hours.

The leader in the share of delayed charter flights is Yakutia airline, already mentioned as the leader in delays of regular flights. It delayed 59 out of 407 flights, or 14,5%, with almost half of them — more than six hours. The second — Iraero, which suspended the programme of flights to Chinese cities because of the debts of the company Zhemzhuzhnaya Reka for 2,3 million dollars. This airline delayed almost every tenth flight out of 142, most of them — for a period of two to three hours. The third place — Saratov airlines — 7 out of 71 flights were delayed, four of them — for 3-4 hours.

The top 10 airlines by delays of charter flights include the largest carriers in this segment of flights. For example, I-Fly (associated with the founder of the tour operator Tez Tour) was the fourth — 121 out of 1,963 charter flights (6,2%) were delayed here, and 41% of the delayed flights departed with a delay of more than six hours. The fifth place — Royal Flight airline associated with Coral Travel, — it delayed 193 out of 3,700 flights, or 5,2%. In general, however, the flights here were delayed not as much as AI Fly's — 31% for 2-3 hours, and more than six hours — 28%.

Mainly charter delays ranged from two to three hours

The largest charter carrier in Russia — AZUR Air airline associated with Anex Tour — delayed about 4,7% of flights — or 390 out of 8,200. The most often delay time — 2-3 hours (around one third of all delayed flights). The second largest charter airline — Northwind — delayed 191 of 4,300 flights, 35% of them — for 2-3 hours. The company belongs to the tour operator Pegas Touristik and has recently started to perform regular flights.

Let us note that Rossiya Airline, part of Aeroflot group, being one of the most punctual carriers with regular flights, in the case of charter delayed much more often. With 2,8400 flights, 103 were delayed – it is 3,63%. The share of delayed flights in the case of charter flights was higher by 3,5 times, and mainly (35% of all delayed flights) the delay was more than six hours.

The most punctual of the major charter carriers is Red Wings, and the situation here is the opposite situation for Rossiya: in the case of charter flights, the airline delayed only 2,6% of flights, but regular flights were delayed already 4,5%. In total, Red Wings carried 1,855 charter flights, 48 of them were delayed, mainly 40% — for 2-3 hours.

In addition, it is worth noting nine airlines that have not delayed a single charter flight. Among them – the airlines that carried out less than ten charter flights (such as Tatarstan UVT Aero, Angara owned by former Governor of Irkutsk Oblast Sergey Eroshchenko, Kosmos production association, which performs special transportation for the rocket and space industry), and larger carriers. There were no delays of charters in 2018, for example, of UTair, Aeroflot, Pobeda and Siberia. In the latter case, however, the second legal entity of S7 — Globus — still allowed two delays of charters for a period of two to five hours.

By Maksim Metveev, analytical department of Realnoe Vremya. Photo: Maksim Platonov