Complaints about air travel services increased nearly 270% from pre-pandemic levels in June 2019, according to the Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Air Travel Consumer Report released Friday.
The DOT received over 5,800 service complaints in June, an increase of nearly 270% from the over 1,500 received in the same month in 2019. According to the report, there were over 28,500 complaints to the DOT in the first six months of 2022, a jump of 27.8% from the same period in 2021[ads1] and more than in the whole of 2019.
The DOT reported that from May to June, the number of service complaints increased by nearly 35%. More than half of the complaints received in June, about 58%, were against US carriers.
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More than 1,600 service complaints in June — nearly 29% — were related to flight cancellations, delays or other deviations from airline schedules, the DOT said. About 24% of complaints from June concerned refunds.
|EVERYTHING||ALLEGIANT TRAVEL CO.||98.11||-2.36||-2.35%|
|ALK||ALASKA AIR GROUP INC.||44.89||-1.31||-2.84%|
|BLUE||JETBLUE AIRWAYS CORP.||8.03||-0.35||-4.18%|
|UAL||UNITED AIRLINES HOLDINGS INC.||36,57||-1.70||-4.44%|
|LUV||SOUTHWEST AIRLINES CO.||37.53||-1.02||-2.65%|
|EEL||AMERICAN AIRLINES GROUP INC.||13.74||-0.68||-4.72%|
|VALLEY||DELTA AIR LINES INC.||32.68||-1.31||-3.85%|
|HAVE||HAWAIIAN HOLDINGS INC.||15.41||-0.73||-4.52%|
|ULCC||FRONTIER GROUP HOLDINGS||12.90||-0.56||-4.16%|
Airlines have continued to be plagued with flight cancellations caused by bad weather, staffing shortages and air traffic control problems this month. They have worked to combat the disruptions by taking steps such as increasing hiring and training and adjusting flight and crew schedules.
DOT ranked Alaska Airlines, Delta Air Lines and Hawaiian Airlines as the three marketing carriers with the highest on-time arrival rates in June. The three marketing companies with the lowest were Allegiant Air, JetBlue and Frontier, according to the DOT.
OVER 3100 FLIGHTS DELAYED, CANCELED ON TUESDAY
Airlines canceled about 3% of domestic flights in June, compared to 1.6% in June 2021 and 2.1% in June 2019. The number of flights in June was about 86% of the number in June 2019, before the COVID-19 pandemic, according to DOT.
Hawaiian Airlines, Alaska Airlines and Frontier had the lowest promotion rates for canceled flights in June, while American, Delta and United had the highest, according to the DOT. United noted to FOX Business that it had the lowest cancellation rate in June (3.5%) among the big three carriers.
“Delta is focused on strong operational performance, including recovering quickly and resiliently when factors such as weather and air traffic control programs impact our operations. Of the more than 20,000 Delta and Delta Connection operated during a final weekend in August, there were only 15 cancellations worldwide,” a Delta spokesperson told FOX Business.
PHOTOS FROM THE ALASKA AIRLINES AIR SHOW METAL PANELS COMING FROM THE PLANE
“Southwest Airlines carried the most passengers among US airlines while leading all airlines in overall customer satisfaction for June and year-to-date, as defined by the DOT’s report,” Southwest Airlines said in a statement to FOX Business. “We are proud the data reflects the dedicated work of our employees to deliver our legendary Southwest Hospitality every day.”
Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg sent a letter to 10 CEOs of US airlines earlier in August, calling the increase in flight cancellations across the country “unacceptable.”
Airlines for American, a trade association representing Alaska Airlines, American, Hawaiian Airlines, JetBlue and others, told FOX Business the airlines “strive to provide the highest level of customer service” and “want travelers to have a safe, seamless and positive travel experience .” Airlines are working with stakeholders to overcome a tight labor market and other challenges as they emerge from the height of the pandemic, the industry association said.
The International Air Transport Association, Frontier, Allegiant, JetBlue and American did not respond to FOX Business’ request for comment by press time.