Charter flight delays worst in eight years - Heathrow,Gatwick,London City Airport News

Airport news for Heathrow,Gatwick,London City on 04/12/2008.

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During the months of July to September, only 59 per cent of charter flights arrived or departed on time - within 15 minutes of their scheduled time - the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) reported.

This performance represents a decline of seven percentage points from the same period in 2007, and also documents the widening gap between the performance of charter and scheduled services other the past year.

In 2007 there was little difference between the two in performance, particularly with service levels at Heathrow being described as dismal by both politicians and business leaders.

As the punctuality of charter flights worsened, regularly-scheduled services showed an improvement, with 70 per cent reporting on time performance. Charter flights are most typically used by holidaymakers on package tours.

The 70 per cent figure represents an improvement of four percentage points over the same months in 2007.

At Heathrow and Gatwick, the improvement was reported at six per cent, and at London City, five per cent.

Industry experts believe that some of the performance improvement can be attributed to the reduction in the number of flights operating from UK airports, as carriers reduce capacity.

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