Now is a peak time for flight delays in the US

Squeezing in the flights.
Squeezing in the flights.
Image: Reuters/Kai Pfaffenbach
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Don’t be fooled by the beautiful weather in the US during summer: It wreaks havoc on air travel.

Just this past week, there have been delays in New York City from thunderstorms, cancelations in Phoenix from heat, and a power outage at a terminal in Detroit due to weather. While there is often focus on travel delays caused by storms or snow in the winter months, delays in the US are just as likely to come in summer.

Where delays in winter months can vary from year to year, summer-time delays are more consistent. Weather is just one factor, causing delays just 3% or 4% of the time.

More of the summer delays are caused by late-arriving aircraft, which is largely caused by more people flying. Summer is the most popular time to fly in the US, which means everything takes longer, from boarding to preparing for takeoff on the tarmac.