CAA Commends Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport for Leading Region In On-Time Performance

New Federal Data Undercuts MWAA Claims That DCA is at Capacity & Overburdened

Washington, D.C. – The Capital Access Alliance (CAA), a coalition of transportation and business leaders from Virginia and around the country seeking to make air travel to and from Washington, D.C. more accessible and affordable, commended Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA) today after new federal data shows that the airport leads the national capital region in on-time performance.

According to new data from the U.S. Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS), DCA led the Washington, D.C. region’s airports and ranked second among the nation’s 30 largest airports with an 82.74 percent on-time departure rate, while Dulles International Airport (IAD) and Baltimore-Washington International Airport (BWI) ranked fourth and 25th, respectively. For arrivals, DCA also led the region’s airports and ranked eighth nationally with a 78.18 percent on-time rate, while IAD and BWI ranked 11th and 21st, respectively.

“Here is yet another set of data points that undercut the false claims of those who want to maintain the status quo and continue burdening American consumers with excessively high ticket prices,” CAA spokesman and Northern Virginia resident Brian Walsh said today. “These numbers confirm that DCA is a top-performing airport and we already know, based on the government’s own data, that it has the capacity to operate additional flights. Data also makes clear that Washington, D.C. is the most expensive destination among the nation’s top metropolitan areas because the outdated perimeter rule is stifling free market competition. It’s time to modernize these outdated and arbitrary restrictions and give Americans stronger and more affordable access to our nation’s capital.”

The new data undercuts repeated inaccuracies made by the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) and Members of Congress who oppose modernizing the outdated perimeter rule and falsely argue that DCA is already at capacity and suffers from the one of the highest cancellation rates in the nation. It also shines light on the latest in a pattern of misleading statements by MWAA and its allies which the Capital Access Alliance has repeatedly fact checked.  Two years ago for example, MWAA proudly unveiled DCA’s new $1 billion terminal expansion which included a new 14-gate concourse, a 230,000-square-foot facility, as well as two new 50,000-square-foot security screening checkpoints, aimed at handling thousands of additional passengers.  Yet today, MWAA officials claim DCA is overburdened and unable to handle any additional passengers, despite Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) data showing otherwise.

Former FAA officials and aviation experts have backed up the government’s own data that shows DCA is an underutilized airport and can safely add more flights within several low-volume blocks of time during the day.

As the U.S. Senate reconvenes, bipartisan support remains strong for modernizing the outdated perimeter rule and authorizing more flights at DCA. The proposal before the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation is a strictly additive measure that would help boost competition in the Washington, D.C. air travel market and lower ticket prices for consumers – all while keeping current in-perimeter routes intact.

About CAA

CAA consists of diverse members from around the country and various industries, including transportation, general business groups, the small business sector, entrepreneurs and job creators, organizations focused on economic development and leaders in the civic and policy communities. 

Learn more about Capital Access Alliance HERE.