Gatwick Airport has longest average delays in UK during summer months, figures reveal

Gatwick has been named the UK’s worst airport for flight delays during the busy summer months.

Figures from the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) show, out of all major UK airports, flights leaving Gatwick had the most delays from June to August.

Those leaving the airport experienced an average delay of 27 minutes over the last two summers, analysis by the BBC revealed.

Data also revealed, out of the 10 busiest airlines, those travelling to and from the UK on easyJet flights waited the longest, with an average delay of 24 minutes.

This took all summer flights into consideration, whether delayed or not, for the busiest airlines in June to August over the last two years.

Gatwick experienced average delays of 27 minutes over the last two summers

Gatwick said the issue was partly beyond its control, claiming strike action by airport staff in mainland Europe, bad weather and the volume of flights across the continent all had an affect.

A spokesman told the BBC: “We recognise the inconvenience that delays cause to our passengers, and we will continue to do everything possible to prevent them from occurring,” he said.

“We operate the world’s busiest and most efficient single runway airport, but, over recent years, Gatwick has been disproportionately affected by issues beyond our control.

“These include repeated strike action by French, Greek, Spanish and Italian air traffic controllers and airport employees, prolonged bad weather, and heavily congested airspace above parts of Europe and London.

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“Gatwick has made it a priority to address punctuality and, in partnership with our airlines and ground handlers, we are already seeing the benefits of a new wide range of measures that have been implemented to improve punctuality.”

An easyJet spokeswoman added: “easyJet operates the largest number of flights of any UK airline, flying over 78 million passengers per year. In 2017, easyJet will operate 33 per cent more flights than in 2011, with less than 0.8 per cent delayed by more than three hours.

“In fact, despite a number of adverse external factors like increasingly congested airspace, particularly in the London area, and record numbers of air traffic control strikes, over the last year, easyJet has actually reduced the proportion of flights delayed by more than three hours.

“We work hard to minimise disruption and fully comply with all relevant regulations.”

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