Asia-Pacific’s best and worst Airlines and Airports based on flight delays and cancellations

The aviation industry in the Asia-Pacific region (APAC) reported a staggering 161% increase in international passengers compared to 2022. This remarkable performance, however, does not equal a satisfactory travel experience for the passengers. On the contrary, the traffic increase combined with severe weather conditions, the higher prices of aircraft fuel, supply chain disruptions, and other factors, have caused thousands of flights over the past year to be delayed and canceled.

The team at BestBrokers decided to see which airlines and airports in the Asia Pacific have been delaying flights the most. We accessed the on-time performance database of OAG, a UK-based air travel data provider, and analysed the latest statistics for all airlines and airports in the region, which had a minimum of 20,000 flights in 2023.

According to our calculations, the least dependable airline in the Asia-Pacific region for 2023 is Indonesia’s Lion Air with a total of 59.73% delayed or canceled flights. The worst airport to be stuck at is Ninoy Aquino International Airport in the Philippines, which had 51.54% of all flights in 2023 delayed or canceled.

The Worst Airlines in the Asia-Pacific

According to the Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA), by the end of 2023, airlines from the region carried a total of 375.5 million passengers, which is only 74% of pre-pandemic levels. This is mostly due to the severe COVID-19 travel restrictions imposed in China and other countries in the region. Some experts estimate that APAC has had the slowest 2023 recovery in air travel since the pandemic.

The North-East sub-region and most notably China experienced some of the most rigorous travel safety requirements. China is the leading country for the APAC when it comes to tourist-driven air travel and even though most of the restrictions were lifted in April 2023, the demand increased slowly over time and didn’t manage to reach the targeted passenger figures.

The Indonesian low-cost carrier Lion Air scored the lowest rating for the region with only 40.27% on-time arrivals out of its 161,373 flights for 2023. Its poor performance is derived from 44.29% of its flights being delayed and another 15.44% canceled.

India’s Go First is another LCC that landed at the bottom of the chart as the second-worst airline in the region. Go First has the highest number of delayed flights in the Asia-Pacific for 2023 with a whopping 47.47% and a cancellation rate of 6.09%.

The third-worst airline in the APAC also didn’t pass the 50% on-time arrival mark. This is Indonesia’s Batik Air and according to our estimations, it had the most cancellations in the past year with 16.35% of their total 120,156 flights being canceled. Another 36.29% were delayed.

The Best Airlines in the Asia-Pacific Region

Some of the biggest long-term challenges for the region are supply chain issues, shortages of materials and manpower, as well as the rising prices of all goods, including aircraft fuel. Despite that, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) is hopeful for the APAC aviation industry, forecasting that it will be the fastest-growing one in the next 20 years. The region is investing heavily in attracting, retaining and educating personnel for the aviation industry in order to tackle the global problem of staff shortages. It is also prioritizing digitalization to provide speedy and convenient services to its fliers.

Garuda Indonesia is APAC’s best airline for timely arrivals based on our research with a remarkable 95.26% OTP rating for 2023. Indonesia’s flag carrier has many domestic routes and 14 international destinations under its belt. The majority of the country’s visitors travel to Indonesia primarily for tourism and leisure, which is why Garuda increased the frequency of their flights to some of the most popular connections like Sydney and Melbourne. The airline offers affordable prices and a good travel experience along with its punctuality.

Bamboo Airways is a close second with 95.21% of on-time arrivals over the past twelve months. The Vietnamese carrier, which launched in 2019, operates predominantly domestic flights. However, it had some setbacks in 2022 with a leadership crisis and posted a $700 million loss. In 2023, it announced a major restructuring, axing routes between Vietnam and Frankfurt, London, Sydney, and Melbourne as well as its entire team in Australia.

The Japanese Fuji Dream Airlines, landing in third place, achieved 91.94% on-time arrivals in 2023. It is a regional carrier preferred by many for the good value for money it offers. In 2022, the airline completed its first-ever flight powered by sustainable aviation fuel (SAF). Since then, the APAC airlines have agreed to include 5% SAF for all carriers by 2030.

Interestingly, half of the ten most punctual airlines on our list are Japanese. Along with Fuji Dream Airlines, these are Japan Transocean Air (88.43% on-time arrivals), Solaseed (88.13% on-time arrivals), IBEX Airlines (88.00% on-time arrivals) and Star Flyer (87.19% on-time arrivals).

The Worst Airports in the Asia-Pacific

The Ninoy Aquino International Airport in the Philippines sits at the bottom of our chart with 51.54% of its 138,124 flights being delayed or canceled in 2023. It is also the airport with the most delays (50.86%) in the APAC. On New Year’s Day 2023, the airport, which is the main international airport for Metro Manila, experienced a severe power outage which caused more than 300 flights to be canceled or diverted to other airports, affecting thousands of travellers. More power outages in May and June struck the airport, disrupting the flights of tens of thousands of passengers.

China’s Wuxi Shuofang Airport in Jiangsu Province ranks second with 37.40% of all departures being delayed and a 9.28% cancelation rate. The long-awaited reopening of China finally happened in 2023 and the flight demand increased gradually over the year. There were still various disturbances to the Chinese aviation industry, however. Throughout the year, the weather conditions were problematic with some of the biggest highlights being Typhoons Saola and Koinu. They affected a vast area of southern China and Hong Kong, cutting off many roads, trains, and airport routes.

On another note, two rather unusual events at the Shenzhen airport led to hundreds of flight disruptions in the past year. In February, one initially unidentified flying object (UFO) occupied the airport personnel for an hour and a half until it was finally dealt with. It turned out to be a balloon but the result was many diverted flights. In October, a drone sighting became an inconvenient interruption delaying over 70 flights and diverting another 30.

The third position on our ranking is for the Sultan Hasanuddin International Airport in Makassar, Indonesia, which had 14.34% of its flights in 2023 canceled, more than any other airport in the region. Another 32.08% of all departures were delayed. January 2023 brought stormy weather for Indonesia’s Makassar and Jakarta Soekarno-Hatta airports, resulting in many canceled or delayed flights. In December, Mount Marapi on the Indonesian island of Sumatra erupted, once again closing down many airports in the area.

The Best Airports in Asia-Pacific

APAC airports are leading the 2023 charts for the busiest international and domestic routes worldwide, with Kuala Lumpur – Singapore Changi being the busiest international route last year, while Jeju International – Seoul Gimpo grabbed the top spot for domestic routes. Last year, India’s Mumbai airport was added to the list of the country’s 66 airports operating entirely on green energy, making them carbon neutral. The region is investing heavily in advanced technological developments and sustainability measures to cut down its carbon footprint and bring a balance between science and nature.

Once again, Japan is the most represented nation in the top 10 best airports list with 5 entries. Leading them is the Osaka International Airport, the most punctual airport in the region, with 88.95% on-time departures for 2023. Situated atop an artificial island, Chubu Centrair International Airport is Japan’s 4th largest airport by land area. With 88.82% of its flights departing on schedule, it comes in second.

The other Japanese honorary mentions are the Miyazaki Airport in the fifth position, the Sendai International Airport in the 6th, and the Kagoshima Airport in the 8th. Japanese airports are, without a doubt, some of the most modern and state-of-the-art airports in the world with high-end hotels, SPA centers, hot springs and dozens of other amenities in and around them. The country also lifted some of the anti-pandemic measures early, with aspirations of boosting tourism and making travel more accessible, resulting in a more profitable second half of 2023.

The third-best airport on the ranking is the Taipei Songshan Airport. It has the most canceled flights (3.28%) out of all ten best airports, but nevertheless achieves an overall excellent score of 87.73% OTP ratio.


To identify the best and worst-performing airlines and airports in the Asia-Pacific region, the team at BestBrokers analysed on-time performance (OTP) statistics from the online database of OAG, a UK-based company that provides digital flight information, intelligence and analytics for the aviation industry.

We looked at the monthly OTP reports between January and December of 2023 and focused only on airports and carriers with more than 20,000 flights for last year. The full lists include 66 airlines and 114 airports, all within the Asia-Pacific region; certain countries are excluded from the global OAG stats, however, such as Russia and all its airports and airlines.

For this analysis, we calculated the percentage of delayed flights out of all flights for the period. We also calculated the cancelation rate for the entirety of 2023. Note that these are rough estimations based on the available data from OAG and may differ from the actual figures reported by airlines and airports.