Budget carrier Jetstar Pacific offered the fewest on-time flights in the last month of 2014 among other airlines in Vietnam, the country’s aviation watchdog said over the weekend.
In December, the low-cost carrier operated 1,625 flights, 30.6 percent of which were delayed, the Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam (CAAV) said in a monthly report on flight cancelations and delays on Saturday.
Thirty-one Jetstar Pacific flights were canceled last month, accounting for 1.9 percent of total flights.
The report covers the on-time statuses of four Vietnamese carriers, including flag carrier Vietnam Airlines, the Vietnam Air Services Co. (VASCO), which is a Vietnam Airlines Corporation subsidiary, and no-frills airlines VietJet Air and Jetstar Pacific.
The CAAV also offers daily reports on the flight statuses of the four carriers on its website.
The four airlines collectively operated 15,268 flights in December 2014, with 2,399 flights – or 15.7 percent – failing to depart on time, according to the CAAV. Only 130 flights were canceled during the month, accounting for 0.8 percent of the total services.
The flight delay rate was 3.2 percent higher than in November.
Most of the delayed flights were caused by “late arrival of aircraft,” which means a delayed flight will affect the schedule of the next flights using the same aircraft, according to the CAAV. In the meantime, bad weather and technical issues were blamed for most of the canceled flights.
VietJet Air was the second worst when it comes to on-time performance, with 692 out of 3,662 flights departing behind schedule last month, or an 18.9 percent rate. The no-frills carrier had to cancel 37 of its flights.
Vietnam Airlines had a delay rate of 12.4 percent, with 1,202 out of 9,672 flights stuck on the tarmac longer than scheduled. The national flag carrier canceled 56 flights in December, or a 0.6 percent rate.
VASCO, which flies between Ho Chi Minh City and Can Tho, Ca Mau and Con Dao, had the best on-time performance, mostly because it only operated 309 flights in December. Merely eight of the flights were delayed, and six canceled, representing a rate of 2.6 percent and 0.6 percent, respectively.
Le Hong Ha, general director of Jetstar Pacific, said the airline will receive more airplanes before the Lunar New Year, or Vietnamese Tet, which could help lower the flight delay rate.
Tet falls on February 19 and it is Vietnam’s biggest celebration.
Jetstar Pacific is expected to have fewer delayed flights in January and February than the final months of last year as its flight schedule has been rearranged, Ha added.
The full-year flight cancelation and delay rate of all Vietnamese airlines in 2014 was around 19.3 percent, approximate to the 2013 figure, according to the CAAV.