Airlines with the longest flight delays in the UK are revealed

A new analysis of flight data has revealed the worst airlines for delayed journeys. 

Wizz Air topped the list for a second year in a row, according to an analysis of Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) data.

The Hungarian carrier’s departures from the UK in 2022 were delayed by an average of 46 minutes and six seconds – more than three times longer than the previous year. 

In December 2022, the CAA expressed ‘significant concerns’ about Wizz Air’s performance, given the company has allegedly delayed payment of refunds. 

Passengers are also apparently more likely to make escalated complaints than in the case of other airlines. has contacted Wizz Air for comment on the recent findings. 

The carrier was closely followed by flights with Tui, which were late departing by an average of 40 minutes and 18 seconds, and Qatar Airways, at 31 minutes and 48 seconds. 

Fourth place went to Turkish Airlines, 29 minutes and 30 seconds, and fifth to Pegasus Airlines, 27 minutes and 18 seconds. 

The analysis examined all scheduled and chartered departures from UK airports throughout last year, amounting to more than 2,500 flights, but did not take account of cancelled flights. 

The average delay across all carriers included in the data was 23 minutes.

Rory Boland, editor of consumer choice publication Which?, said: ‘These figures are worrying, but will be no surprise to passengers who’ve had to endure shoddy treatment from airlines for years. 

‘With a regulator still lacking the appropriate powers to punish airlines who break the law, including withholding refunds, it is difficult to escape the conclusion that some carriers are simply getting away with leaving passengers high and dry.’

The CAA does have powers to punish airlines for unfair treatment of passengers, but such cases often take many years to come to fruition. 

There were talks in early 2022 about the government widening the body’s enforcement abilities, but no actual changes have yet been made.

The recent figures come amid the usual travel chaos affecting the UK over the Easter bank holiday weekend, with the RAC estimating that UK drivers will have made more than 17 million leisure trips by car by the end of Monday – a 25% increase on normal levels. 

While the level of disruption at airports has paled by comparison to last year, when thousands of passengers were affected by delays and cancellations, British Airways were nevertheless forced to cancel roughly 300 flights in the run-up to the break due to industrial action.

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