AirTran leads 15 airlines in performance last year

April 2, 2012 - 9:55 AM

Low-cost carrier AirTran had best performance last year among 15 airlines that carry at least 1 percent of domestic passenger volume, according to an annual report released Monday. Overall, airline performance improved last year as judged by four measures — passengers who endured lost bags, delayed flights, lousy service or bumpings from full flights.

The report was compiled by Wichita State University business professor Dean Headley in Kansas and Purdue University aviation technology professor Brent Bowen in Indiana. It is based on 2011 data submitted to the Department of Transportation by the nation's 15 largest airlines, as well as consumer complaints to the department.

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Overall performance, plus previous year's ranking

1) AirTran (1)

2) Hawaiian (2)

3) JetBlue (3)

4) Frontier (9)

5) Alaska (4)

6) Delta (7)

7) Southwest (5)

8) US Airways (6)

9) SkyWest (10)

10) American (11)

11) Continental (8)

12) United (12)

13) Atlantic Southeast (15)

14) Mesa (13)

15) American Eagle (16)

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On-time performance

Industry average, 80 percent of flight on-time

1. Hawaii Airlines, 92.8

2. Alaska Airlines, 88.2

3. AirTran Airways, 84.4

4. Mesa Airlines, 83.7

5. Delta Air Lines, 82.3

6. Southwest Airlines, 81.3

7. United Airlines, 80.2

8. US Airways, 79.8

9. SkyWest Airlines, 79.3

10. Frontier Airlines, 79.2

11. American Airlines, 77.8

12. Continental Airlines, 77.1

13. American Eagle, 76.3

14. Atlantic Southeast Airlines, 75.2

15. JetBlue Airways, 73.3

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Passengers bumped from flight

Industry average, 0.78 denied boarding per 10,000 passengers

1. JetBlue, 0.01

2. Hawaiian, 0.11

3. Delta, 0.31

4. AirTran, 0.57

5. Southwest, 0.65

6. SkyWest, 0.68

7. Alaska, 0.82

8. Atlantic Southeast, 0.91

9. American, 0.92

10. US Airways, 0.94

11. Frontier, 0.97

12. United, 1.01

13. Continental, 1.49

14. American Eagle, 2.24

15. Mesa, 2.27

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Lost or mishandled bags

Industry average, 3.35 percent per 1,000 passengers

1. AirTran, 1.63

2. Frontier, 2.21

2) JetBlue, 2.21

4) Hawaiian, 2.63

5) Delta, 2.66

6) US Airways, 2.70

7) Alaska, 2.87

8) Continental, 3.35

9) American, 3.55

10) Southwest, 3.65

11) United, 3.66

12) SkyWest, 4.13

13) Mesa, 4.87

14) Atlantic Southeast, 5.52

15) American Eagle, 7.32

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Consumer complaints submitted to the Department of Transportation

Industry average, 1.19 complaints per 100,000 passengers

1. Southwest, 0.32

2. Alaska, 0.48

3. Mesa, 0.62

4. Hawaiian, 0.70

5. AirTran, 0.72

6. SkyWest, 0.73

7. Frontier, 0.76

8. Atlantic Southeast, 0.88

9. JetBlue, 1.08

10. Delta, 1.23

11. American Eagle, 1.45

12. American, 1.46

13. Continental, 1.81

14. US Airways, 1.91

15. United, 2.21