26 August, 2023

Two London airports in the worst European flight hubs for delays this month

  • Two in five (41%) of London Gatwick outgoing flights are delayed and nearly 1 in 3 (28%) of planes from London Heathrow have arrived late. 
  • Almost half (49%) of flights from Frankfurt were delayed - the highest figures across the whole of Europe.
  • Travel expert shares tips for navigating and keeping stress low during this turbulent summer holiday season.

London Gatwick has seen the second-highest number of delays across the whole of Europe, with over two in five outgoing flights arriving late (41%) at the beginning of August, according to data analysed by flights comparison site, FlightsFinder.

The capital also took another seat on the delays list with London Heathrow being the sixth worst on the continent as a result of almost 1 in 3 (28%) of its outward planes being held up. 

Taking the top spot overall though is Frankfurt International Airport, with a whopping half (49%) of flights delayed. 

39% of flights were delayed at Charles de Gaulle/Roissy CDG, positioning it in third place, closely followed by Paris Orly in fourth place with 38% delayed and Istanbul Airport in fifth with 33%.

Making up the eight European airports experiencing the most delays at the start of this month are Vienna Int'l and Pôle Caraïbes (PTP), both with 26% of flights delayed.

European airports aren’t the only ones tackling difficulties at the moment though. An average of 30,000 global flights are delayed every single day Forbes reveals - a staggering number considering that this is almost a third of the estimated 100,000 flights each day worldwide.

In fact, flight delays have soared to a 10-year high in 2023 according to Flight Aware. 

Shahab Siddiqui, CEO of flight comparison search engine, FlightsFinder, explains: “One of the main reasons why delays are so rife at the minute is that there are simply far more global flights taking off than there have been in the past few years. 2023 has marked the real beginning of travel post-pandemic recovery.” 

While the increase in air traffic has undoubtedly come as a much-welcomed development for those in the travel business, airports and airlines have struggled to keep up, after slashing staffing numbers during the COVID-19 outbreak.

“They are struggling to hire people fast enough to keep up with demand. While flight timetables are getting busier and busier, the staff members are only increasing very gradually and unfortunately resulting in large numbers of delays.”

Yet, it’s not all doom and gloom. 

“While the delays can of course be highly inconvenient and disruptive, it’s important to remember that these are merely the unfortunate symptom of something very much greater: the recovery of the travel industry after years of difficulty. Though there will be a few hold-ups along the way, the underlying positives far outweigh the inconvenience."

To help travellers remain as calm and stress-free as possible during the turbulent summer season, Shahab has shared some tips on how to deal with delays.

“To minimise the negative impact of delays, I’d recommend looking at what you can control and finding ways to turn the situation into a positive experience. For instance, if you discover that your flight will be delayed for an hour or two, consider heading to an airport restaurant and treating yourself to a nice meal. This way, you can make the most of the situation and turn it into a part of your holiday.

“However, for longer delays of four hours or more, it is often better value to invest in access to an airport lounge. Passes can be purchased for as little as £20 in some airports. Once in there, you’ll have unlimited access to free food and drinks.”

FlightsFinder compares the price of flights across every metasearch engine and comparison site to find the very best deals. The company also offers a service that allows customers to pay an expert to find them an incredible price on a flight or get their money back.

More information on FlightsFinder can be found here >


The data was sourced by FlightsFinder on Tuesday 1st August.