Top 10 Least Stressful US Airports this Thanksgiving

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Researchers at InsureMyTrip reveal which airports tend to cancel flights to help travellers to make more informed decisions. Also, how the latest data trends can aid travellers when comparing travel insurance benefits.
  • InsureMyTrip predicts New York’s LaGuardia (LGA) will no longer be most stressful for travellers this 2019 Thanksgiving. LGA has improved its cancellation rate this year. Moreover, the airport previously reported the highest percentage of cancelled flights in the country for both 2018 and 2017 (winter storms a factor).
  • Chicago airports have endured a rough patch with on-time performance issues. Chicago O’Hare International (ORD) and Chicago Midway International (MDW) are currently experiencing the highest cancellation rates in the country, based on available 2019 data. Those numbers don’t yet include last week’s snowstorms which grounded over 1,000 flights.
  • Flights scheduled for departure between 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm are more susceptible to delays and cancellations.
  • If an airline cancels a flight, it will rebook travellers on the next available flight at no additional charge. However, airlines do not require to reimburse travellers for losses incurred as a result of a flight cancellation

This is the list of the least stressful airports this Thanksgiving, based on flight cancellation rates:

Ranking — City/Airport

1          Honolulu, HI: Daniel K Inouye International (LOWEST)

2          Kahului, HI: Kahului Airport

3          Salt Lake City, UT: Salt Lake City International

4          Atlanta, GA: Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International

5          Boise, ID: Boise Air Terminal

6          Portland, OR: Portland International

7          Spokane, WA: Spokane International

8          San Juan, PR: Luis Munoz Marin International

9          Seattle, WA: Seattle/Tacoma International

10        Minneapolis, MN: Minneapolis-St Paul International (HIGHEST)

This list contains the data for non-stop domestic flights by major air carriers collected in 2019. Thus far by the Bureau of Transportation Statistics and analyzed by InsureMyTrip.

Flight Cancellation Policies

Flight cancellation policies vary by airline and circumstance. When an airline cancels a flight, most will try to rebook passengers on the next available flight.

Also, It is not mandatory for Airlines to reimburse travellers for losses incurred as a result of a flight, such as prepaid, non-refundable:

  • Hotel room
  • All-inclusive vacation or resort
  • A cruise
  • A tour or safari
  • Concert or entertainment tickets

Travellers concerned about protecting any trip expenses should buy travel insurance.

Dealing With Flight Delays

Each airline has its own flight delay policy for passengers waiting at the airport; there are no federal requirements. Travellers concerned about delays should be aware of the following:

  • Generally, early departures are less likely to be delayed.
  • Book a non-stop flight (no stops).
  • When booking, ask the airline about the on-time performance percentage for an individual flight.
  • Closer to departure, check real-time airport data. This will provide timely information on weather concerns or air traffic delays.
  • Be aware of “creeping delays.” This is when an airline continues to push back a departure time it can sometimes be extended for hours or lead to a cancellation.
  • If a flight is delayed, try to learn the reason why to better gauge if the flight is in jeopardy of being cancelled. Furthermore, reasons for delays may include maintenance, fueling, crew issues, weather, previous flight with the same aircraft arrived late, causing the present flight to depart late, or security issues.
  • Some flights will be delayed on the tarmac before or after take-off. As a general rule, DOT prohibits flights to remain on the tarmac for more than three hours.

Passengers with departing flights at busier airports should consider travel insurance with robust travel delay benefits.


Rankings were based on the flight cancellation rate per airport. Airports on the list also reported 14,000 or more scheduled flights for 2019 thus far. Also, researchers also noted other factors, like hurricanes and winter storms, led some airports to report a high number of cancelled flights earlier in the year.