Skift Take

We're not sure of the pilot's complaints, but we do know that improved on-time arrivals these days have much in common with schedules that don't always represent reality.

What to Know Now

Airlines have been hotly competing over on-time performance for the last few years, equally to improve operations and to gloat over competitors. But a new effort coming up from American may be putting the airline’s operations at risk.

The warning comes from the chronically grumpy pilot’s union at American, which says that new efforts to massage flight schedules may be overextending crews and causing safety issues. Whether American’s high-jinks are above and beyond what other carriers are doing is still unknown.

Still, it’d be nice to see a little bit of slack built into the drumbeat of ontime performance. Last month on a flight of mine through Chicago O’Hare, a friendly gate agent offered to call the police on a fellow passenger if he raised a stink about missing our connecting flight. We had arrived at the gate two minutes before departure and the aircraft had already pushed.

Social Quote of the Day

When will AA learn that sending A321Ts to Boston on utilization runs keeps delaying the transcon flights? Cut it out

– @AirlineFlyer | Jason Rabinowitz, AvGeek researching and writing things about airlines, airplanes, transit and travel.



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Your Turn

Skift just turned four! Read an update from our CEO, Rafat Ali, here.

Tips and Comments

Can be sent to gm[at]skift[dot]com or to @grantkmartin

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Photo credit: An American Airlines Boeing 787 Dreamliner at Chicago O'Hare International Airport. Many airlines continually struggle with their on-time goals. Ron Jenkins / Associated Press/The Fort Worth Star-Telegram via

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