Best and worst days to fly at Christmas

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Changi Airport

Oslo had 602 delays last Christmas; here’s how to avoid them

Oslo Airport had 602 flight delays last Christmas, according to AirHelp. In response, AirHelp, a company that helps travellers claim their legal rights and apply for compensation, has come up with a list of the best and worst times to fly this coming festive period.

During last year’s Christmas period (December 19 to January 2), the airports at Norway’s five biggest cities, Oslo, Bergen, Trondheim, Stavanger and Tromsø, saw 1,148 late flights, Airhelp says.

Of these, 602 delayed flights were registered at Oslo Gardermoen. This hit tens of thousands of Norwegians in total, something that will also happen this year.

“Last year, Friday 23 December was the last working day before Christmas, and of course this is a busy day. However, the travel day with the most delays in the last two years is still 21 December. Punctuality is falling significantly this day,” says Andreas Hermansson, head of AirHelp in Norway.

Stats also show that December 22 is usually the busiest day at the largest airports in Norway, so it is advisable to steer clear both that and the previous day.

Closer to Christmas
“Many people are bound to regular travel times in Christmas, but if you are a little flexible you run much less chance of delays if you travel at other times,” Hermansson says. “It may be sensible to make the trip closer to Christmas Eve.”

On the other side of Christmas, “December 29 is the day that usually has fewest delays,” Hermansson advises.

As the best time for departure before Christmas Eve, Airhelp recommends December 24, 06:00 to 12:00. After Christmas Eve: December 29, 06:00 to 12:00. The worst times? Before Christmas Eve: December 21, 16:00 to 22:00; after Christmas Eve: December 30, 16:00 to 22:00.

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