U.S. Airlines’ flight to Performance
According to the Airline Quality Rating, the U.S airline industry succeeded in achieving its best performance of all times last year, in 2013, since the ranking system was launched in 1991.
On the top of the list stands Virgin America, for the second year in a row. Virgin America is a California-based airline, launched in 2007, which has gained over the last years an impressive list of best-in-class awards, like „Best Domestic Airline”, or “Best Business/First Class”, both for six consecutive years.
Virgin America’s top service among all airlines is considered to be baggage handling. However, its overall performance was slightly lower than last year.
Hawaiian Airlines is listed as a top on-time performance company and Southwest Airlines registered the lowest # Consumer complaints among all U.S airlines.
Compared to 2012, the overall industry performance has improved when it comes to denied boarding and customer complaints. Southwest Airlines achieved the lowest number of consumer complaints, compared to Frontier, which registered the poorest result of all companies.
The AQR scores are composed out of 15 performance indicators divided into four major fields that are considered to be important to consumers, like: arrival time, baggage service, boarding service, and consumer policies area. The KPIs used are:
- % On-time arrivals
- # Involuntary denied boardings
- % Mishandled baggage
- # Customer complaints by type
The Airline Quality Rating uses a unique mathematical formula in determining all the important variables to count for the rating system in the airline industry. The data used in the research is retrieved from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s monthly Air Travel Consumer Report.
- Hunter, M. (2014), And the best airline in the U.S. is …, CNN News
- Virgin America (2014), About us
- Virgin America (2014), Corporate fact sheet
- Wichita State University (2014), About the Airline Quality Rating