Why We Made This Site
I was flying out to San Diego to meet up with my wife in late January 2018. She had been in California for work, and it seemed like a good opportunity for a cheap weekend escape from Austin, Texas. My late afternoon flight from Austin to Los Angeles was uneventful, landing just after sunset and with plenty of time to take the massively inconvenient bus to the “remote terminal” for my connecting flight to San Diego. We boarded on time, and just as I was settling into my seat the flight attendant informed us that we would be delayed due to weather and needed to get off the airplane.
It was 9:30 PM. My wife was already waiting for me at the airport in San Diego. I had options available — wait and hope the plane leaves, take a train, rent a car, use a bus, get a hotel and wait for tomorrow — but I needed more information to make that decision.
What I needed to know was whether the flight would leave tonight. If the weather was going to improve then waiting and taking the plane, delayed as it may be, was the better option. But if the flight was going to be canceled then I needed to leave right then and there, grab a rental car before the other delayed passengers drained the local supply, and start driving so I might make it to San Diego before midnight.
Thankfully as an instrument rated pilot I knew exactly where to find that information, and a few minutes of research later I knew that the visibility at the airport was not going to improve enough to let our aircraft make an approach and landing before morning. I was already at the rental car counter by the time the airline informed me that my flight was canceled, way ahead of the rest of the passengers.
I’d like to say our luck was better on the return leg, but a snow and ice storm was barreling towards Texas on the day we were due to return. We were booked on a flight to Austin connecting through Dallas, and this time the airline decided to preemptively cancel our Austin flight and re-book us for another flight a couple days later.
Again, I needed more information. We needed to get home to get back to our jobs. The flight to Dallas was still operating at the moment, but was it likely to be delayed or canceled due to weather as well? If it was going to make it to Dallas, would we have enough time to rent a car and drive home before the weather arrived?
Once more the instrument rating came in handy. With my understanding of where to get aviation specific weather forecasts and what kind of weather will impact operations I decided our flight to Dallas was likely to make it on time, and we could get home before the storm arrived. We called the airline, straightened out the flights, and everything fell into place exactly as I predicted.
When we finally arrived home my wife suggested we make this site. Pilots like myself have a significant advantage when things start going wrong — we know where to look for the right information, and can make good judgement calls about what flights are likely to be canceled or delayed. The average traveler doesn’t have access to that same information, which puts them at a significant disadvantage. This site is designed to bridge that gap and give non-pilots access to the same information and experience as the pilots.
Using our technical and operational knowledge we have designed this site to automatically gather all the pertinent information about flight delays and analyze the data in real time, presenting an easy to understand post with all the information you might need to make a decision about your travel plans.
About the Author
Nick is an instrument rated private pilot with over 350 hours Pilot In Command time aircraft ranging in size from the Piper Cherokee PA-28-180 to the Boeing 737-800 NG.
To fund his AvGas addiction, Nick works as an IT security professional with a deep background in software development.
Airports We Cover
We subscribe to the FAA’s data feed for airports experiencing flight delays within the United States and some Canadian airports. This list typically covers all commercial airports and will alert us when a delay happens no matter whether we actively scan for it or not.
Predictive Analytics Airports
For our predictive modeling we scan a select number of airports each day to try to identify airports likely to experience delays due to the forecast or other conditions. The following list includes all airports we proactively scan, let us know if there’s an airport you would like to see added and we will try to add ones that have a significant number of requests.
|Airport Code||Airport Name|
|AUS||Austin Bergstrom International|
|CVG||Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International|
|DCA||Washington National Reagan International|
|DFW||Dallas/Fort Worth International|
|DTW||Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County|
|EDDF||Frankfurt Airport (FRA)|
|EGLL||London Heathrow (LHR)|
|EHAM||Amsterdam Schiphol (AMS)|
|EIDW||Dublin Airport (DUB)|
|EWR||Newark Liberty Intl|
|IAD||Washington Dulles International|
|IAH||Houston George Bush Intercontinental|
|JFK||New York John F Kennedy International|
|LAS||Las Vegas McCarran International|
|LAX||Los Angeles International|
|LEMD||Madrid–Barajas Airport (MAD)|
|LFPG||Paris Charles de Gaulle (CDG)|
|LGA||New York Laguardia International|
|LTBA||Istanbul Ataturk Airport (IST)|
|MSP||Minneapolis-St Paul Intl/Wold-Chamberlain|
|MSY||Armstrong New Orleans Intl|
|OMDB||Dubai International Airport (DXB)|
|ORD||Chicago O’Hare International Airport|
|PHX||Phoenix Sky Harbor Intl|
|RJTT||Tokyo Haneda Airport (HND)|
|SAN||San Diego International Lindbergh Field|
|SAT||San Antonio Intl|
|SEA||Seattle Tacoma International|
|SFO||San Francisco International|
|SJC||San Jose International|
|SLC||Salt Lake City International|
|VHHH||Hong Kong International Airport (HKG)|
|VIDP||Indira Gandhi International Airport (DEL)|
|ZBAA||Beijing Capital International Airport (PEK)|
|ZSPD||Shanghai Pudong International Airport (PVG|
Flight Delay is a website owned and operated by Burke & Blais, LLC. All rights reserved. More information at www.burkeandblais.com