As readers of this blog will know, traversing the globe can be fun, educational, and is a great way to spend a vacation. However, the means needed to get to whichever exotic destination one has picked out do not always lead to an easy or entertaining ride. With cuts on costs being made on nearly every single major airline, these usually translate to poorer customer service, and, as a result, a higher rate of complaints and dissatisfaction.
A study, performed by Wichita State University and Purdue University, helps travelers choose the best airlines this summer as families go off on vacation and globe-trotters begin booking flights to whichever destination best suits them. The study, which documented the number of complaints filed against airlines per 100,000 passengers, as well as a number of other factors, took place over the last year. It shows which airlines held their ground, despite the growing economic turmoil and the tendency for such companies to sacrifice valuable services to save a few dollars in the long run.
New to the study in the past few years, Hawaiian came out on top among the 18 airlines surveyed by the study. These airlines, considered the busiest, are rated on several different factors deemed important by clients. Hawaiian was found to have more planes land on time, less bags lost or misplaced, and the highest rated customer service of all the evaluated airline companies.
Not all were as lucky, however. American Eagle, owned by American Airlines, was dead-last by the time the results were published. Known for overbooking, the study concluded that up to 3.76 people in 100,000 were denied boarding in the past year. In contrast, low-cost carrier JetBlue had so few denied boardings due to overbooking that the result showed up as zero in the final count.
Some say that Hawaiian had an unfair advantage over other airlines, as Hawaiian, which flies between the Hawaiian islands, had the advantage of short flights, something the study reportedly did not take into account. Regardless, as readers prepare to pack their bags and take off for the summer, the content of this study should not be ignored, while more intra-global travelers should, however, take the study’s conclusion with a grain of salt and perhaps do some more research regarding international airline rankings.
[Image: Wichita State University]