Even as the on-time performance of airlines reaches an all-time low, the reality is worse, the New York Times reports. Since they track how late planes are, not how late passengers are, airline statistics don't reflect a good deal of the waiting time—particularly when a passenger misses a connecting flight or has a flight cancelled.
Time isn't counted for fliers trapped on tarmacs for hours if their flights are eventually cancelled. When cancellations and missed connections are factored in, an MIT study founnd, the average customer wait is two-thirds longer than the reported statistic. And since planes have become more crowded since the study was done, the wait to get a seat on another flight is even longer.