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Delta Air Lines’ Named North America’s Most Punctual Airline In 2023

by Staff


  • avianca is the world’s most punctual airline in 2023, with an OTP rate of 85.73% across over 213,000 flights.
  • Delta Air Lines wins the Cirium Platinum Award for the third consecutive year, with an OTP of 84.72%.
  • Delta’s hub, Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport, is the most punctual global airport, with 84.44% of flights departing on time.

On-time performance is one of the most critical metrics for airlines, ensuring their operations run smoothly and aircraft are utilized as much as possible because grounded aircraft do not generate revenue. Cirium, a world-famous aviation analytics firm, publishes a monthly report for every region of the world outlining the most punctual airlines in several categories and, at the beginning of each year, releases an annual report. An on-time flight is one that arrives at its gate within 15 minutes of the scheduled arrival.


Today, January 2, Cirium released the 2023 report which revealed avianca as the world’s most punctual airline in 2023, knocking Azul Linhas Aéreas Brasileiras from the top spot. The Latin American carrier, which recently underwent a rebrand, had an on-time performance (OTP) rate of 85.73% across more than 213,000 flights. Delta Air Lines was fourth in the global category and number one in North America.


World’s Most Punctual Airline In 2023: avianca

The airline may have beat out other airlines around the globe but it finished second in Latin America.

Delta is a well-respected and liked airline in the United States. Despite not having the newest fleet or the most comprehensive route network of American carriers, Delta is a powerhouse and a regular award winner. For the third consecutive year, Delta has been given the Cirium Platinum Award, a demonstration of its commitment to operational performance and minimizing passenger disruption.

According to Cirium, Delta’s 84.72% OTP was more than 2% greater than that of second-place Alaska Airlines. The report shows that 1,635,486 flights were tracked by Cirium last year, an average of nearly 4,500 daily flights. Cirium’s CEO, Jeremy Bowen, said,

“It’s incredible to witness Delta Air Lines winning its third consecutive Platinum Award and topping the North American Category. Other airline and airport winners steered through the year’s operational hurdles with exceptional performance. Their relentless pursuit of efficiency and punctuality is commendable as we venture into 2024, a year brimming with promise for the aviation sector.”

Alaska Airlines, much smaller than Delta, also maintained a strong OTP in 2023, regularly at the top of the monthly reports. Cirium tracked 404,925 flights in 2023, and Alaska managed to keep 82.25% of those on time. American Airlines, which had the most flights tracked, 1,998,844, had an on-time arrival rate of 80.61%. Below are the top five airlines in the US:


On-time ranking

On-time arrival

Delta Air Lines



Alaska Airlines



American Airlines



United Airlines



Southwest Airlines



Top performing airports

Cirium also measures on-time performance by airport, and on-time flights are those which leave within 15 minutes of their scheduled departure. In 2023, the most punctual global airport happened to be a Delta hub, Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport.

A Delta Air Lines aircraft departing from Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport

Photo: natmac stock | Shutterstock.

Last year, Cirium tracked 289,817 flights, and 84.44% departed on time. Another US airport that also made the top five globally is Salt Lake City International Airport, another Delta hub. Salt Lake City had 83.99% of its 226,705 flights depart on time last year.

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