40% of passengers in the Middle East said they had been impacted by flight disruptions
Middle Eastern airlines lose around $2.76 billion in lost revenue each year due to delayed or cancelled flights, with a survey showing that more than a third of travellers in the region have been impacted by flight disruptions, according to industry estimates.
Approximately 3.9 million global flights – or 10,700 a day – were delayed for more than 30 minutes or cancelled last year, affecting over 470 million passenger journeys around the world, according to data from aviation analyst firm Cirium.
They estimate that the global airlines lost around $30 billion a year as a result of such incidents, the equivalent of around $7 for every departing passenger.
With the latest data from the International Air Transport Association (IATA) showing that the Middle East represents around 9.2 percent of world passenger demand, the impact on the region’s airlines is likely to be around $2.76 billion a year.
A survey conducted by YouGov also found that 40 percent of those polled in the Middle East said they had suffered a delayed or cancelled flight.
“Flight delays and cancellations are an unfortunate aspect of modern air travel and can have a big impact on travellers, whether flying for business or leisure. We recognise that the cost of disruption for airlines is also a significant problem,” Jeremy Bowen, CEO of Cirium, was quoted as saying in a press statement.
“We all want to travel stress free and get people to where they want to go, which is why at Cirium we work closely with airlines around the world on initiatives which reduce the impact of disrupted flights.”
The Cirium survey found that 80 percent of respondents said they would welcome an app that alerted their friends, family or company whenever there was a delay to their flight.
Flight delays and cancellations are usually caused by factors such as aircraft technical issues, bad weather or medical emergencies.
Passengers’ level of frustration also varied depending on the cause of the delay or cancelation. The survey found 37 percent of respondents would be most understanding if the cause was bad weather, while only 10 percent said they would be sympathetic if the delay or cancellation was due to air traffic control issues.
A survey this week by online insurance service Insurancemarket.ae found that 25 percent of travel-related claims were for missed connections, with another 25 percent due to for delayed flights. A further 45 percent were for issues such as lost or accidental damage to personal belongings, while just five percent were for emergency medical reasons.