While air travel can be a convenient and fast way to travel for business or pleasure, it can also provide its own set of obstacles. Flight delays, misplaced luggage, and being denied boarding are just a few of the things that can pose a challenge. As a result, it is critical to select an airline that is dependable and trustworthy. Our study found Delta, Alaska Airlines, Southwest, JetBlue, and Hawaiian Airlines to be among the top contenders for the most reliable airline in 2023.
We examined data from the Bureau of Transportation Statistics over several years to identify the most dependable airlines departing from the United States.
The study assessed four metrics: the rate of on-time arrivals, the percentage of canceled flights, the rate of mishandled baggage, and the denied boarding rate.
Let’s look at some of the things to consider when picking a dependable airline while we highlight some of the most reputable airlines based on industry data.
1. On-Time Arrival Rate
The percentage of flights that arrive at their destination within 15 minutes of their specified arrival time is known as the on-time arrival rate. An airline with a high on-time arrival record is efficient and reliable, and it can help passengers plan their travel schedules with confidence.
Delta had the highest on-time arrival rate in 2021 and 2022. Delta had an 83.5% on-time arrival rate in 2021 and an 83.6% on-time arrival rate in 2022. Given the number of flights Delta conducts each day, this is a remarkable achievement. Alaska Airlines was the second most dependable airline in terms of on-time arrival rate, with a rate of 81.7% in 2021 and 81.9% in 2022.
2. Canceled Flight Rate
The canceled flight rate is the percentage of flights canceled by an airline. Flight cancellations can be extremely inconvenient for travelers, especially if they are on a tight schedule or have connecting flights to catch. A low canceled flight rate reflects an airline’s dependability and ability to adapt to unexpected circumstances such as weather interruptions.
Southwest had the lowest rate of canceled flights in 2021 and 2022. Southwest canceled 0.9% of its flights in 2021 and 1.1% in 2022. This is an incredible effort given the number of flights Southwest runs each day. Delta was the second most dependable airline in terms of canceled flights, with a rate of 1.3% in both 2021 and 2022.
3. Mishandled Baggage Rate
The portion of luggage lost, damaged, delayed, or stolen during a flight is known as the mishandled baggage rate. Mishandled baggage can be extremely inconvenient for passengers, especially if they are traveling with medication, devices, or crucial documents. A low mishandled baggage rate reflects an airline’s attention to detail and ability to oversee passengers’ items carefully.
Delta had the lowest mishandled luggage rate in 2021 and 2022. Delta had a mishandled baggage rate of 1.5 passengers per 1,000 in 2021 and 1.8 passengers per 1,000 in 2022. Given the volume of luggage handled by Delta each day, this is a remarkable achievement. Alaska Airlines was the second most reliable airline in terms of mishandled baggage, with a rate of 1.7 per 1,000 passengers in both 2021 and 2022.
4. Denied Boarding Rate
The percentage of passengers denied boarding by an airline as a result of overbooking or other factors is known as the denied boarding rate. Passengers who are denied boarding can have a frustrating experience, especially if they have already checked in, gone through security, and arrived at the gate.
JetBlue had the lowest denied boarding rate in 2021 and 2022. JetBlue had a 0.01% denied boarding rate in 2021 and 0.02% in 2022. This demonstrates JetBlue’s efficient operations and ability to effectively regulate passenger loads. Delta was the second most dependable airline in terms of denied boarding rate, with a rate of 0.04% in both 2021 and 2022.
Based on these metrics, which airlines are the most reliable?
Considering all the above factors, the most reliable airlines in 2023 departing from the United States are:
1. Delta was the most reliable airline overall, ranking first in three of the four categories (on-time arrival rate, mishandled baggage rate, and denied boarding rate).
2. Alaska Airlines placed second in two of the four categories (on-time arrival rate and mishandled baggage rate), trailing behind Delta.
3. Southwest had the lowest canceled flight rate, which is a crucial factor in airline reliability.
4. JetBlue had the lowest denied boarding rate, due to its efficient operations and exceptional customer service.
5. Hawaiian Airlines scored in the top five for all four metrics, proving the carrier is a reliable airline.
The Best Choice For You
Overall, when selecting an airline that is dependable and trustworthy in 2023, consider Delta, Alaska Air, Southwest, JetBlue, and Hawaiian Airlines.
Aside from these measurements, other aspects to consider when selecting an airline include ticket pricing, routes, and amenities. Before booking your flights, it is vital you research and compare airlines. Save time and avoid stress by entrusting your vacation plans to the educated travel experts at Guide Me Away, who have already done the research for you.
Ultimately, the most reliable airline for you will rely on your unique travel expectations and preferences. That being said, regardless of the airline you choose, be prepared for unexpected problems or delays. Booking through a travel agency like Guide Me Away, on the other hand, provides 24-hour customer support to help you with any problems that arise during your trip. Consider obtaining travel insurance to safeguard yourself in the event of any unanticipated events. Guide Me Away’s travel experts can provide more information on the best travel insurance for your trip.
It’s important to remember that airline reliability can fluctuate over time, so it’s always a good idea to stay informed and up-to-date on the latest airline news and trends.
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