Chinese airports experience more delays than anywhere else in the world

By Ryan Kilpatrick, March 22, 2015

0 0

Chinese airlines and airports are the least punctual on Earth, according to the latest data from US-based monitoring firm FlightStats.

Just 65 percent of mainland flights left on time last year. Even that number, however, looks good compared to Shanghai's Hongqiao and Pudong airports, where a paltry 37 percent of flights take off when they're supposed to.

ALMOST UNDERSTANDABLE: Passengers on board delayed flight open emergency exits and escape down to taxiway

Hangzhou's Xiaoshan Airport does little better with 38 percent of flights leaving on time, and Shenzhen Bao'an, Guangzhou Baiyun, Chongqing Jiangbei and of course Beijing Capital all follow close behind.

By pulling away from the gate on time and just sitting on tarmac for up to several hours, China's own official figures paint a much cheerier picture of about three-quarters of flights leaving on time.

While bad weather and technical problems hold flights back worldwide, most of China's late departures are the result of politics. The PLA controls 70-80 percent of China's airspace, leaving only tiny corridors above cities for civilian aircraft to take off, land and navigate storms in.

Unable to take alternative routes, planes pile up and aircraft controllers have no incentive to get them off the ground.

To add insult to injury for China's aviation industry, perennial baddies Japan can boast the most punctuation flights in the world - when they're not being delayed by errant Chinese shoppers.

READ MORE: Okinawa airport brought to a standstill after Chinese travelers breach security to go shopping

Still, at least China is improving. In 2013, only 18 percent of flights from Beijing left within 15 minutes of their scheduled departure time, while Shanghai came in at 29 percent.

more news

Like a Literati: How to Enjoy Suzhou's Gardens

Step into a traditional Chinese landscape painting.

This Day in History: China at the 1984 LA Olympics

Defying a Soviet Union-led boycott, Li Ning earns the nickname Prince of Gymnasts.

This Day in History: The Marco Polo Bridge Incident

On July 7, 1937, the cataclysmic event that led to the start of the Second Sino-Japanese War.

It’s Now Yangmei Season in China, Here’s What You Need to Know

Here’s what you need to know about China’s popular summer fruit.

Apply Now for 2020-21 School Year at Wellington College International Hangzhou

Admissions for the 2020-21 academic year at Wellington College International Hangzhou are now open.

I Spent a Week in North Korea with Dennis Rodman

Dennis didn't know the first thing about the DPRK: not even the difference between North and South. He was just along for the ride.

Useful Mandarin Phrases for Spring Festival and the Year of the Rat

Handy phrases to help you survive Chinese New Year.

The Ultimate Guide to International Schools in Zhejiang and Jiangsu 2020

A comprehensive guide to the best international schools in Eastern China’s Yangtze River Delta region.

0 User Comments

In Case You Missed It…

We're on WeChat!

Scan our QR Code at right or follow us at thatsonline for events, guides, giveaways and much more!

7 Days in China With

Weekly updates to your email inbox every Wednesday


Download previous issues

Never miss an issue of That's Magazines!

Visit the archives