In the News from Panama

Copa Named Most Punctual Airline in World

Airline industry data company OAG has named Copa Airlines as the most punctual airline in the world, the first time a Latin American airline has earned the honor.

Copa posted an on-time performance (OTP) of 89.79 percent, dethroning 3-time winner airBaltic, the company reports. Copa has also been recognized as the most punctual airline in Latin America for the sixth consecutive year, according to FlightStats.

This is good news for residents and businesses in Panama, providing confirmation of the reliability of the local airline. The recognition is particularly impressive, given Copa’s rapid expansion in recent years. It has turned Panama City into the “Hub of the Americas”, which will expand even further in the year ahead as a second terminal opens at Tocumen International Airport.

Copa operates an average of 350 daily flights through Tocumen, connecting to 80 cities in 32 countries of North, Central and South America and the Caribbean.

The recognition is “a direct result of the Copa Airlines team’s work, dedication, and commitment, proving that Panamanians and Latin Americans can be top providers of world-class service,” Copa CEO Pedro Heilbron said in a statement. “I also want to highlight the vital work the Civil Aviation Authority contributes to our operation, such as the work performed daily in the control tower, the Air Control Center, and the Tocumen International Airport, entities that have facilitated the necessary conditions to achieve the best level of punctuality in the industry.”

OAG’s “Punctuality League” uses 57 million flight records to create a ranking of the best on-time performance for the world’s largest airlines and airports.

Only two U.S. airlines made the list of the top-20 most punctual –- Hawaiian Airlines in fourth with an on-time performance of 87.52 percent and Delta in 16th with an 83.08 percent OTP.

Japan Airlines was the top-performing “mega-airline” with an 85.27 percent OTP.