The Points Guy’s (TPG) third annual “Best Airlines Report” names the best and worst airlines.
TPG has ranked the best airlines in the US based on data obtained from the US Department of Transportation (DOT), airline financials and publicly available fleet data. Eleven factors came into play—timeliness, cabin features, cancellations, route network, ticket value, fees, frequent flyer program, customer satisfaction, lost baggage, lounges and bumps—that reflect both traditional airline criteria and the changing aviation landscape. Each factor was weighed individually and then combined for an overall score that allowed the ranking of airlines from one to 10.
Brian Kelly, CEO and founder of TPG, said in a recent release that the report reflects a shift in priorities for travelers. “It’s been a milestone year for aviation in America, and this report directly reflects the changes in the industry and consumer preferences with shake-ups in our top rankings.”
Best Airlines Report for 2019:
- Alaska (down one)
- Southwest (down one)
- United (same spot)
- Hawaiian (up four)
- American (same spot)
- JetBlue (up one)
- Allegiant (same spot)
- Spirit (down two)
- Frontier (down five)
Delta bumped Alaska Airlines to the No. 2 spot this year due to having 92.7 percent of planes arriving on time, the largest network of lounges and cities served, and fewest bumped passengers—32 out of more than 136 million Delta fliers. Alaska remained the only airline that had power outlets at every seat and its royalty loyalty program still reigned supreme, offering the best value and perks for all tiers of membership. Southwest moved from No. 2 to No. 3, but retains the best customer service and customer loyalty.
Hawaiian gained the most ground this year, jumping up four spots and was the undisputed ruler of getting flights out on time, with an overall 6.4 percent of flights delayed for 30 minutes or less for the period examined. This was more than half as many delays as all other top 10 airlines and four times less than Frontier. JetBlue also jumped up one spot this year, its free WiFi and seatback screens, playing their part in passenger comfort.