North American Airline Customer Satisfaction Reaches Historic High in JD Power Survey

Business Travel News 5/29/2019

AAA World Article

Alaska Airlines, Southwest and JetBlue lead North American carriers in guest satisfaction, according to J.D. Power's annual survey of nearly 6,000 travelers who flew a North American airline between March 2018 and March 2019.

Airline satisfaction reached its highest in the survey's history, as the overall score increased 11 points to 773 on a 1,000-point scale. Satisfaction rose 22 points among legacy carriers but decreased six points for low-cost carriers. Even so, low-cost carriers on average outscored legacy carriers by a score of 793 to 763. "While low-cost carriers have historically had the highest levels of customer satisfaction in our study, due to a strong sense of value for money among customers, that line is starting to blur as traditional carriers improve their services and operations," according to J.D. Power travel intelligence lead Michael Taylor.

J.D. Power North American Carrier Satisfaction Scores
On a 1,000-point scale

Traditional Carriers
Alaska (801)
Delta (788)
American (764)
Average (763)
Air Canada (729)
United (723)

Low-Cost Carriers
JetBlue (817)
Southwest (817)
Average (793)
WestJet (758)
Spirit (711)
Frontier (702)

The highest satisfaction was for airlines' reservations and check-in systems, while inflight service scored the lowest. Other areas rated include cost and fees, aircraft quality, boarding and baggage and flight crews.

Among "traditional" carriers, Alaska Airlines scored highest for the 12th year in a row. For low-cost carriers, JetBlue and Southwest tied at the top. Southwest has been on top of the segment for the past two years.

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