Worst Connection Airports in America

Nonstop air travel is usually the preferred method for most travelers. However, with the 1978 deregulation of the airlines as well as the constant demand for cheap ticket the hub and spoke system is the most common method for the airlines. That means connecting flights are inevitable.


Legacy carriers such as United and Delta have numerous base hubs scattered throughout the U.S. Odds are if you’re traveling on any major legacy carrier, you will be connecting on a different flight through one of the airlines hubs. Even low cost carriers such as Southwest and JetBlue also utilize hubs.


Some hubs are better than others and some are an outright nightmare for connecting travelers. The larger hubs tend to make connecting a little more challenging. On occasion a passenger may have to make a brisk walk in order to catch that final leg which unfortunately, is at the other end of the terminal. The other challenge of connecting though hubs are delays. They happen for numerous reasons such as weather, air traffic congestion and maintenance delays. Below is a list of the ten worst airports for connection flights. The list was conducted by the Bureau of Transportation Statistics.


10. Fort Lauderdale Hollywood International Airport

Located 20 miles from Miami, nearly 21% of the flights landed late.  The airport is a hub for JetBlue and Spirit Airlines.


9. Washington Dulles International Airport

Dulles is located 25 miles from Washington D.C. The airport serves over 20 million passengers annually. In 2011 23% of inbound flights landed late and 20% departed late causing a ripple effect both ways. Dulles is a major hub for United Airlines.


8. Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport

Located just a few miles from the nation’s capital this airport served over 18 million passengers in 2011 and experienced 22% late arrivals and 17.50% late departures. Reagan is a hub for U.S Airways.


7. Philadelphia International Airport

The airport serves nearly 30 million passengers annually and is the 12th busiest airport in the world when it comes to traffic. In 2011 23.84% of arrivals and 21.1% of the airports departures were delayed. The airport is a major hub for U.S Airways.


6. Chicago O’Hare International Airport

This second busiest airport in America not only has a lot of air traffic but it also suffers from extreme weather patterns which cause massive delays. In 2011 O’Hare 24.52% of arrivals were behind schedule and 25.6% of departures were delayed. The airport is a major hub for American Airlines and United Airlines.


5. John F. Kennedy International Airport

JFK is the gateway to America. Most international flights coming over the Atlantic go in and out of JFK. The airport is among the busiest for air traffic congestion. 2011 saw 24.66% of all arrivals come in late and 22.49% left late. JFK is a hub city for Delta Airlines, American Airlines and JetBlue.


4. Logan International Airport

Located in Boston, Logan served 29 million passengers in 2011. A staggering 26.35% of all arriving flights came in late and 21.11% of all departing flights experienced delays. Logan is a focus city for JetBlue.


3. LaGuardia International Airport

Located in-between JFK and Newark, New Jersey’s Liberty International Airport LaGuardia is part of an extremely busy airport system so it’s no surprise in 2011 27.82% of all arrivals were late and 22.49% didn’t take off on time. LaGuardia is a hub for Delta Airlines and focus city for American Airlines.


2. San Francisco International Airport

This bayside airport is a victim of morning fog which can cause delays. In 2011 28.62 of all arrivals were late and 23.72% of departing aircraft took off late. SFO is a hub for United Airlines and Virgin America.


1. Newark Liberty International Airport

On time arrivals at Newark are few and far between. In 2011 the airport had 33.28% of all arriving flights land late and 27.03 taking off late. Liberty is a major hub for United Airlines.