Which airports had the most delays and cancellations in 2023, and where do O’Hare and Midway rank?

AUSTIN (KXAN) — One-fifth of all flights in the U.S. were delayed in 2023, according to federal data.

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) publishes delay and cancellation data for airports across the country.

BTS uses arriving flights when reporting delayed and canceled flights. A flight is considered delayed if it arrives at the gate 15 or more minutes after the scheduled arrival time.

Nationwide, more than 6.8 million flights were scheduled on U.S.-based airlines last year. Of those, around 5.4 million were on time, accounting for 78.2% of all flights.

O’Hare, Midway stats

Chicago’s international airports, O’Hare and Midway, both ranked a little better than the national average in delayed flights for 2023 and just about on par with the national average for canceled flights.

According to the BTS data, 1,386,699 flights were delayed nationwide in 2023, out of more than 6.8 million. That’s about 20.2% of all scheduled domestic flights in the country.

Meanwhile, 87,943 fights were canceled, about 1.3% of the total. That’s fewer than half last year’s cancellation total of more than 181,000.

At O’Hare, 79.4% of scheduled flights were on time, compared to 19.1% delayed, 1.3% canceled and 0.2% diverted.

At Midway, 78.5% of scheduled flights were on time, compared to 19.7% delayed, 1.4% canceled and 0.4% diverted.

Not surprisingly, O’Hare ranked among the busiest airports in the U.S. in 2023, clocking in at No. 4 with 258,843 flights. That was behind only Hartsfield-Jackson International in Atlanta (336,458), Denver International (288,972) and Dallas/Fort Worth International (285,218).

Midway saw traffic of 85,092 flights in 2023, 28th-most in the U.S.

Elsewhere in Illinois, Chicago/Rockford International recorded an impressive rate of 83.2% on time out of 722 flights, compared to 15.8% delayed, 0.7% canceled and 0.3% diverted. University of Illinois of Illinois/Willard in Champaign/Urbana, meanwhile, had a rate of 81.7% on time, 16.1% delayed, 1.6% canceled and 0.7% diverted out of 1,408 flights.

Airports nationwide

Among international airports in the Chicagoland vicinity, St. Louis Lambert recorded a rate of 79.1% on time, 19.9% delayed, 0.9% canceled and 0.1% diverted out of 61,890 flights, General Mitchell in Milwaukee recorded a rate of 76.8% on time, 21.6% delayed, 1.5% canceled and 0.1% diverted out of 26,172 flights and Indianapolis recorded a rate of 78.5% on time, 20% delayed, 1.4% canceled and 0.1% diverted out of 44,976 flights.

Nationally, Florida is particularly prone to delays, with six of the top 10 airports with most delayed arrivals. But San Juan, Puerto Rico, was the worst offender among larger airports, with almost a third of flights arriving at least 15 minutes late in 2023. Minneapolis/St. Paul had the fewest delays, at 14.6%.

New York-area airports had the most canceled arrivals, with Newark, LaGuardia and JFK all appearing in the top four airports with the most cancellations, along with Portland, Maine. Each had more than 2% of flights canceled.

Use the interactive database below to see the statistics for a specific airport. You can search for a specific airport or city using the search feature in the top left.

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