The strikes suffered by several airlines this summer (Ryanair, EasyJet, Iberia Express or Air France, among others) together with air congestion in Europe have caused a large number of flight delays and cancellations, as well as problems with luggage, in the summer of recovery after the pandemic. These are incidents that always increase in season, but this year they have occurred with special intensity, according to the latest data compiled by Reclamador.es. Between the months of June and August, the legal consultancy has registered 17,000 incidents, with July being the month with the highest number of lawsuits filed. The Barcelona airport concentrates the highest level of conflict in Spain and exceeds that of Barajas in claims filed against the airlines that fly in it, they indicate from the legal consultancy. These are not lawsuits against the airport itself, but against the airlines, stresses Ana Rodríguez, director of operations at Reclamador.es, but the data suggests that it has been more permeable to conflicts in the sector and that its operations have been been most affected. In total, El Prat adds 2,100 claims against the airlines in the three summer months. Of these, more than 1,000 are due to cancellations of flights departing from the airport, while delays account for almost 900 incidents. According to data from the consulting firm OAG, El Prat's punctuality index in August was 67.7%, meaning that almost a third of the flights analyzed were delayed. Of the 13,099 flights registered by OAG that month, 0.6%, that is, 78, were cancelled. In July the punctuality index in Barcelona was somewhat lower, 66.5%, while 158 flights were cancelled, 2% of the total, says OAG. The highest number of cancellations at this airport occurred in June, 185 in total, but there were fewer delays, with a punctuality rate of 69.2%.
After El Prat, Barajas is the second airport for incidents presented. In total, Reclamador.es has received 1,200 passenger lawsuits against the companies that operate there, more than half related to delays. All in all, the punctuality index of the Madrid airport is much better than that of Barcelona, with 79.6% of the planes taking off on time in August. In this way, despite the fact that this airport adds more flights and passengers than El Prat, it has better punctuality data and fewer complaints. Rodríguez points to two reasons that could explain this difference: a higher incidence of airline strikes in El Prat and the airport's own capacity, less than that of Barajas and with a greater risk of congestion. “It has fewer tracks than Madrid,” he points out. They are followed, by number of incidents, by the airport of Mallorca.