Qantas recorded the most domestic cancellations of any airline in Australia last month, according to new performance data, with the Flying Kangaroo partly blaming strikes in WA. The airline’s main domestic operation had a cancellation rate of 4.3 per cent, according to the Bureau of Infrastructure and Transport Research Economics. Jetstar and Virgin Australia posted a cancellation rate of 4.1 per cent. When combined with regional QantasLink services, Qantas’ figure was slightly better at 3.9 per cent. Qantas said this number was a better reflection of its overall performance, claiming the combined figure is more comparable with Virgin. “We know how important it is for our customers to get away on time and we’re focused on making sure we deliver on the experience our customers expect,” a Qantas spokesman said. “Severe weather caused more delays and cancellations in October, with weather impacting flights on all but six days for the month. “We remain the most on-time major airline, leading our main competitor for a 14th consecutive month.” Qantas said 42 of its flights were cancelled due to lightning strikes over the month, while industrial action from Network Aviation pilots in WA caused significant cancellations for regional travel. But the airline posted the highest number of on-time arrivals of the majors, at 73 per cent compared to 68.8 per cent for Virgin and 68 per cent for Jetstar. Only 65.1 per cent of Qantas’ domestic — excluding QantasLink — left on time. Jetstar had more cancellations on Perth services from east coast capital cities compared to any other carrier. The bureau said performance across all categories was still below the long-run average for arrivals, departures and cancellations. “This month’s on-time arrivals figure was significantly lower than the long-term average performance for all routes (81.2 per cent) and the on-time departures figure was also significantly lower than the long-term average (82.3 per cent),” it said in its report. “The rate of cancellations was higher than the long-term average of 2.2 per cent.” Staff shortages with Air Services Australia air traffic controllers are also contributing to the delay in returning on-time performance figures to pre-pandemic levels. Regional Express — which only flies between Perth and regional centres in WA — had a cancellation rate of 2.3 per cent. Melbourne-Sydney, which is the busiest route in the country, was the most cancelled service for both Qantas and Virgin. Jetstar’s most cancelled route was between Adelaide and Sydney, while Rex cancelled more than one-fifth of its flights on regional east coast services such as Townsville-Cairns and Sydney-Armidale. There were only six days in the month of October where schedules were not affected.