With effect from January 2016 data we have amended the way we analysed and present some charter airline punctuality data.
Primarily, flights listed as charter services operated by Thomas Cook Airlines
and Thomson Airways
will now be considered as scheduled flights, and analysed in both our monthly OTP league table and the scheduled airlines and airports sections alongside scheduled airline data.
Immediate changes with effect from the 13 June 2016
site update (January 2016 Latest OTP update) are:
- All Thomas Cook Airline and Thomson Airways flights at UK Reporting Airports are considered scheduled services, and are analysed alongside the existing 13 UK & Ireland scheduled carriers in our Latest OTP section, bringing the total number of airlines analysed in this table to 15.
- Charter Airline punctuality is no longer analysed in the monthly Latest OTP section.
From the 5 July 2016
site update (Jan-Mar 2016 Scheduled update), additional changes will be:
- All Thomas Cook Airlines and Thomson Airways flights will be analysed in the Scheduled League Table, which will increase from analysing the 35 largest airlines at UK Reporting Airports to the 40 largest airlines, based on number of flights.
- Thomas Cook Airlines and Thomson Airways will have dedicated route-level analysis pages added in the Scheduled Airlines section, analysing all flights operated by the respective carriers.
- UK Reporting Airport league tables will (where relevant) include Thomas Cook Airlines and Thomson Airways flights in their quarterly punctuality league tables.
When we began analysing seasonal charter flight punctuality on the site in 2003, there were eight UK charter airlines operating over 120,000 charter flights per year at 10 UK Reporting Airports. By 2015, only two such carriers (Thomas Cook and Thomson) operated an equivalent total of around 53,000 charter flights.
Additionally both of these carriers have adapted their business models in recent years to operate many of their flights as scheduled services, leaving part of their operation analysed in the charter airlines section and the other part in the scheduled section. This was most prominent in 2015 for Thomas Cook Airlines, operating over 28% of their flights as scheduled services in 2015.
This disparity in presentation is confusing for site users, who cannot readily identify which dataset provides a representation of these carriers punctuality performance.
Both Thomas Cook and Thomson sell seat-only fares on nearly all their flights, whether they are officially operated as charter services or scheduled services. As such, we believe this makes their punctuality performance directly comparable with the other scheduled and low cost airlines we analyse.