Under intense scrutiny and operating a reduced schedule, Tiger Airways bounced back to lead domestic carriers in on-time performance during October.
Qantas, not surprisingly, saw its on-time numbers tumble amid industrial action that led the airline to ground its entire flight for two days at the end of October, according to figures released by the Department of Infrastructure and Transport.
For the month, 84.7 per cent of Tiger flights departed on time. Virgin Australia was next at 82.9 per cent, followed by Qantas at 76.4 per cent and Jetstar at 75.8 per cent. The regional airlines were led by Regional Express at 84.8 per cent, followed by Skywest at 83.9 per cent and QantasLink at 79 per cent.
The numbers are a boost for struggling Tiger, which lost $38 million in the last financial quarter after its flights were suspended for six weeks over safety concerns. CASA this month cleared the airline to increase its weekly flight load from 22 to 32, still well below pre-suspension numbers.
While Tiger says it must increase flights in order to break even, the reduced schedule has at least correlated with improved on-time performance. Prior to the July 1 suspension, the budget carrier consistently hovered between 60 and 70 per cent on-time departures, well below other airlines.