The 10 Worst Flights: Avoid These Regularly Scheduled Travel Nightmares

According to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, the following flights are the 10 worst flights in existence. They’re regularly scheduled and they are late 92-100% of the time. Avoid them like you avoid drug-resistant TB.

Now, on to the flights!

US Airways Flight 1543
From:BOS-CLT
Departs: 6:35 pm
Percentage late: 100.00%
Average Minutes Delayed: 53

Comair Flight 5463
From JFK-BUF
Departs 6:52 pm
Percentage late: 96.67%
Average Minutes Delayed: 75

SkyWest Flight 2570
From: CMH-MKE
Departs: 8:55 pm
Percentage late: 96.15%
Average Minutes Delayed: 42

US Airways Flight 1582
From: CLT-EWR
Departs: 3:45 pm
Percentage late: 95.83%
Average Minutes Delayed: 67

Comair Flight 5625
From JFK-JAX
Departs 5:35 pm
Percentage late: 93.75%
Average Minutes Delayed: 79

US Airways Flight 656
From: DCA-PHX
Departs: 4:39 pm
Percentage late: 93.75%
Average Minutes Delayed: 71

US Airways Flight 619
From: ATL-LAS
Departs: 9:47 pm
Percentage late: 93.75%
Average Minutes Delayed: 42

JetBlue Flight 1606
From: JFK-PWM
Departs: 5:40 pm
Percentage late: 93.33%
Average Minutes Delayed: 60

American Airlines Flight 1639
From: JFK-SJU
Departs: 7:05 pm
Percentage late: 93.33%
Average Minutes Delayed: 54

Comair Flight 4997
From: ORF-JFK
Departs: 7:00 pm
Percentage late: 92.86
Average Minutes Delayed: 95

There you have it folks, the 10 worst regularly scheduled flights in existence as of April 2007.

In other news, only 63% of all US Airways flights were on time in April, so if you’re looking for a handy cheat-sheet to avoiding late flights: Avoid US Airways. —MEGHANN MARCO

Air Travel Consumer Reports [Bureau of Transportation Statistics]
(Photo: Drewski2112)

Comments

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  1. vr4z06gt says:

    i agree im from philly and i say avoid philly and usairways whenever possible, and especially in that combination.

  2. jamesdenver says:

    The easiest way to avoid delays is to leave as early in the morning as possible. Planes hopscotch all over the country, (or back and forth between along a “spoke”) before landing at your airport. An 8am flight has a higher chance your plane will be there, and not delayed.

    Also know your backups. I know alternative flights and airlines serving my route, so I can easily use them if necessary. And use your mileage numbers. If delayed and going standby on another flight you’ll be higher up the que.

    james.. http://www.futuregringo.com

  3. davere says:

    Anything through Denver should be avoided as well. I will always pay extra if that is the only way to avoid a layover in that place with hellish weather.

  4. Artdonovansbabyboy says:

    There also was a bit of a JFK trend in those rankings. Much like everything else Im blaming this on New Yorkers

  5. j-o-h-n says:

    USAIR = Unfortunately, Still Allegheny In Reality.

    (I guess this is dating me)

  6. winnabago says:

    I’ve been on a couple of these specifically! I must have the worst luck, as I tend to schedule the latest flights for work.

    Don’t forget their new and improved method of waiting: “ground hold”. It’s something you get to experience all the time if you fly into BOS or JFK frequently. 180-minute delays anyone? My last flight from BUF-BOS spent over an hour sitting on the end of the runway, and I literally was looking out the window at my car I had just parked in the long term lot.

    I don’t buy the excuses they make for it either – that “we can’t get a number for approach until we are fully loaded onto the plane”. There has to be a better way.

  7. jamesdenver says:

    @davere: Barring our five freakish storms last winter Denver functions very well. Six huge runways spaced far apart and it’s rated very well for connecting traffic. I’d take it over Chicago any winter, but I agree if I did have a choice over Christmas it’s a better bet through Dallas, Phoenix, or Vegas.

  8. hollerhither says:

    I clicked over, but without digging too deeply, I wonder if this study covers cancellations, or just the planes that actually take off and land — Delta has seemed to have the most, uh, “aggressive” cancellations policy of any airline I fly (reason is always “mechanical”). Not sure if that’s because it’s cheaper for the airline to cancel and avoid penalties for late arrivals/departures at the gate, if Delta has different issues getting crews from one airport to another, or if there’s something else at stake.

    Or, should I assume that either a)Delta flights break down more or b)Delta is more scrupulous than any other airline when inspecting its fleet…?!

  9. pjsammy says:

    I’m surprised to see CLT on there so much. Anybody know what’s going on there?

  10. aparsons says:

    @vr4z06gt: Why hate on Philadelphia. According to the signs in their airport, they are ranked #2 in customer satisfaction (http://www.flickr.com/photos/allanparsons/343162314/in/set-72157594455317000/).

    Ha ha. To be honest, I think hell might be ranked #1. Philadelphia is the only airport I know that can manage to lose carry on luggage.

  11. Arlahna says:

    This makes me even more glad that I fly out of Seattle. It can have its issues (hour+ security checkpoint lines) but I rarely have major delay issues, here at least.

    Another good point: book a flight early in the morning. It’s more likely to leave on time.

    Personally I avoid Frontier and Southwest like the plague. They’re cheap, sure, but you get what you pay for and nothing more.

  12. velocipenguin says:

    I made the mistake of flying USAir between Boston and Rochester just last weekend. Never again.

  13. levenhopper says:

    @j-o-h-n: my dad says that all the time.

    Funny, even with all the bad press on this site, Consumer Reports ranks Jet Blue their #2 choice.

  14. Tallanvor says:

    My general rule with the hubs is avoid the northern ones as much as possible in the winter, and avoid the southern ones as much as possible in the summer, and avoid New York and Philly like the plague.

  15. amb1545 says:

    PHL is the worst airport I’ve ever experienced. You will never land on time in Philly. Add to that the fact that it’s a US Airways hub and it’s almost impossible to get a decent flight out of this shit hole of a city.

  16. rickspeaks says:

    @pjsammy

    The reason CLT is on there so much is that Charlotte (CLT)is a hub of city of that horrible airline, US AIR

  17. Antediluvian says:

    Thanks to richspeaks for spelling out CLT = Charlotte; next time you post a ton of airport codes, could you please include a translation table or some sort of key? I thought I knew my airport codes but damn, not so much as I thought.

  18. Chicago7 says:

    Seems unlikely that none of them are out of or into O’Hare! (ORD)

  19. ElizabethD says:

    @j-o-h-n:
    Ha ha — I remember flying on Allegheny!

  20. Funklord says:

    The reason JetBlue still ranks highly with Consumer Reports (and they re-did their survey after the ice storm debacle) is that when you compare them with the rest of the airlines out there, they are still vastly superior.

    I flew this weekend on United, my first non-Jet Blue/Southwest flight in several years, and was reminded of this fact. United tries repeatedly as you check in to sell you a $44 upgrade to a seat that has actual legroom. Once on the plane, they make repeated announcements that you are not allowed to change seats at any time during the flight (presumably to force you to pay if you want a more comfortable seat). My flights were full so the issue was moot, but I’m curious if the stews actually try to enforce this on empty flights.

  21. Funklord says:

    The reason JetBlue still ranks highly with Consumer Reports (and they re-did their survey after the ice storm debacle) is that when you compare them with the rest of the airlines out there, they are still vastly superior.

    I flew this weekend on United, my first non-Jet Blue/Southwest flight in several years, and was reminded of this fact. United tries repeatedly as you check in to sell you a $44 upgrade to a seat that has actual legroom. Once on the plane, they make repeated announcements that you are not allowed to change seats at any time during the flight (presumably to force you to pay if you want a more comfortable seat). My flights were full so the issue was moot, but I’m curious if the stews actually try to enforce this on empty flights.

  22. pestie says:

    For those of us who haven’t memorized every 3-letter ICAO airport identifier in the country, can we get a translation? I only recognize about half of these.

  23. Snakeophelia says:

    Woo-hoo for my hometown (CAE, or Columbia, SC). Of course, they’re a tiny little airport, but the place is very attractive – duck ponds, free parking, and all.

    Since I now live near Philly, I’m stuck with that crappy airport. I pay extra for non-stop flights now because I know all flights leave Philly late, so I’d always be at risk of missing a connection.

  24. kelmeister says:

    CMH: Columbus, Ohio is representin’!

  25. TangDrinker says:

    I can see the CLT (Charlotte) airport from my office window. Anyone needing flight updates, just call me and I’ll let you know what’s going on.

  26. synergy says:

    That’s why I travel at the crack of dawn. Anything after 10PM is a loss.

  27. synergy says:

    Oops. I meant 10AM.

  28. Grrrrrrr, now with two buns made of bacon. says:

    Philly = Worst airport ever. Not because there’s anything inherently wrong with the airport, but because half the air traffic in the country seems to goes through there, so all it takes is one summer thunderstorm to completely throw the whole air traffic system into complete chaos.

  29. Trackback says:

    I#8217;m a big fan of data. The more data, the better. Data helps us make better decisions which usually saves time, money, or all of the above. Data about the airlines help travelers, like myself, vote with our feet (and our money).

  30. MarkMadsen'sDanceInstructor says:

    I’m tempted to buy one of these 100% delayed tix when I don’t really care about when I leave in an attempt to get a voucher for a free flight. I don’t know which airlines give free vouchers for delayed flights though.

  31. spinachdip says:

    I’m mildly surprised LGA doesn’t make the worst 10, considering the amount of traffic and that jets need to be towed to and from gates.

  32. Cap'n Jack says:

    @vr4z06gt: Wait, what? There’s not a single flight with PHL on it. Where do you Philly listed here?