Is there any specific reason as to why airline schedules for the summer season start around 27 March and winter season around 27 October? Thanks.

  • $\begingroup$ Why are people voting to close this as off-topic? This is about airline operation. $\endgroup$ – vasin1987 Feb 21 '19 at 19:22

The main reason for new schedules in March and October is the Daylight Savings Time changeover.

It is a MAJOR headache for airlines all over the world. Schedules have to undergo extensive restructuring during the switch over from summer daylight savings time to winter standard time. Maintaining code-share connection times is the biggest priority.

What makes this all very difficult is the fact that many countries and localities do not observe daylight savings time, or have different dates for the switch-over. This is especially true for flights between northern and southern hemispheres.


During Nov-Mar, snow is common in Europe and the continental US, which means (a) more schedule padding to account for airport delays and deicing, and (b) passengers wanting to fly to ski destinations.

During Apr-Oct, snow is unusual in Europe and the continental US, which means (a) less schedule padding due to good weather, and (b) passengers wanting to fly to beach destinations.

Airlines flying in other regions probably have different scheduling periods to account for different weather trends, e.g. summer/winter reversal in the southern hemisphere, monsoons near the equator, etc.

  • $\begingroup$ since the question does not specify, there is a specific reason why you restricted the answer to the continental US? (also, took me a while to figure out that acronym, can we skip them, if not really needed?) $\endgroup$ – Federico Feb 21 '19 at 21:11
  • $\begingroup$ The dates/seasons fit the northern temperate region, excluding oceanic islands. I'll add Europe since I now realize that fits too, and their carriers seem to switch about the same time as the US ones. $\endgroup$ – StephenS Feb 21 '19 at 21:29
  • $\begingroup$ It may also be worth to note that many airlines nowadays codeshare - thus synchronized time table changes are a plus. $\endgroup$ – Raffzahn Feb 21 '19 at 21:35

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