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San Diego International Airport

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San Diego Airport Delays

Key Facts and Figures on San Diego's Airport

Despite having only one operative runway, San Diego's airport is the busiest air faciltiy of its kind in the United States. More than 17 million passengers used the airport during 2012, and the facility has a significant economic impact in the city. More than 6,000 jobs have been created to support San Diego's airport, and although the most recent terminal expansion cost $232 million, the airport generates annual revenues in excess of $10 billion. San Diego International has three terminals, which together contain 45 boarding gates. There are 22 commercial airlines that operate in and out of San Diego's airport, as well as 5 cargo carriers. The latest air traffic report (March 2013) shows that more than 1 million passengers go through the airport every month. In terms of number of passengers, the most popular international routes leaving San Diego's airport are those to London Heathrow, Mexico City, Toronto, Calgary, and San Jose del Cabo, in Mexico too. The busiest domestic routes are those headed to San Francisco, Phoenix, Denver, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, and Chicago. San Diego International is also a popular destination for travellers heading to Hawaii.
San Diego International has been listed among the world's top three airports of its size for two consecutive years. The following carriers have operations in San Diego International: Air Canada, American Airlines, British Airways, Delta Airlines, Delta Connection, Japan Airlines, United Airlines, and US Airways.

San Diego International Airport: from the 1920s to Our Days

The history of San Diego's International Airport can be traced back to the early 20th century. The construction of the airport had much to do with Charles Lindbergh, who is known as the first aviator to fly non-stop between New York and Paris. Lindbergh moved to San Diego in 1927 and used the local airfield to test his plane in preparation for the pioneering transatlantic flight. Prior to this, the local airfield had been serving the route between San Diego and Los Angeles, but a year after Lindbergh's famous flight, the aviator supported the development of the airfield so that it would be turned into an international airport, which was inaugurated in August 1928 with the name of San Diego Municipal Airport / Lindbergh field.

In 1934, the first international routes took off from the airport, so its name was changed to San Diego International. It was not until after World War II was over that the airport began to expand its operations and to accommodate increasingly larger planes, to the point that two new and bigger terminals were open in the 1990s. Further expansion is currently underway, as the so-called Green Build Project will be completed towards the end of 2013.

Flight Cancellations and Delay Statistics

San Diego International has a good record when it comes to punctuality and flight cancellation statistics. On an average day, only 25 per cent of departures and 15 per cent of arrivals are late or very late. The busiest time of the day to fly out of San Diego's airport is between 6am and 9am. However, the largest number of delays occurs between noon and 6pm. The airlines that have the best record of punctual departures and arrivals are Sky West Airlines, Alaska Airlines, Virgin America, and United Airlines. On the other hand, the most likely to have delayed or cancelled fights were South West Airlines, Delta Airlines, American Airlines, US Airways, and Spirit Airlines. All current delays can be found in the table above this article. For information on current flight status, please visit the airports official website.

Get compensated for Flight Delays

Passengers flying from or into EU countries who are delayed due to overbooking or other reasons are often entitled to receive compensation from the airline. Their rights are secured by EU regulations. Flightright helps passengers flying from or to the EU claiming their compensation and does all the work for them. They have law experts at hand and have successfully claimed compensation for thousands of clients. You can find out all details and if your flight can be compensated by your airline with out Compensation Calculator below.

What rights do I have?

Under EU law, you can get up to 480£ compensation in the event of a delay, cancellation or overbooking of your flight.
This is true regardless of the ticket price and up to 6 years retrospectively.


What to do when delayed?

  • gather information
  • Take photos
  • You are entitled to vouchers
  • Keep documents from the airline, such as letters, tickets, vouchers
250 €
< 1,500km
3H Delay
400 €
1,500km - 3,500km
3H Delay
600 €
> 3,500km
3H Delay
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