LAX is tops for flight delays during the Thanksgiving holiday

Thanksgiving travelers wait in line to check in at terminal one at the Los Angeles International Airport on Nov. 23, 2011. LAX had the highest rates of delays during the Thanksgiving holiday in 2016.
(Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times)

Los Angeles International Airport, the nation’s second busiest airport, is expected to be No. 1 in an unfortunate category: the percentage of delayed flights during the long Thanksgiving travel crush.

A study by, a flight tracking website, concluded that LAX outranked all other airports during last year’s Thanksgiving holiday in the percentage of flights delayed more than 15 minutes.

LAX reported 27% of its flights delayed, followed by San Francisco International Airport with 26%. Newark Liberty International Airport ranked third with 25%, and McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas was fourth with 22%.

There is no guarantee that LAX will report the same rate of delays during this holiday period, but airport officials note that the total number of landings and takeoffs this year will be little changed from last year’s — 18,230 scheduled compared to 18,020 flights in 2016.


Also, points out that there are no major storms forecast across the nation for the holiday week.

Still, no matter how many delays are reported at LAX, the airport will be packed with frustrated travelers. LAX is expected to serve 2.38 million fliers during the 11-day holiday period, up 2.3% over the same period last year, according to LAX officials.

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