Data & Research

New report reveals how Americans really feel about airlines

December 19, 2022

DataScalp, the first online platform that captures consumer experiences and uses consumer data to rank companies in a performance dashboard, today announced the results of a new consumer survey that explains which airlines American consumers like and dislike the most and why. The survey was conducted by Propeller Insights and sponsored by DataScalp.

“Consumers are not feeling the love from airlines. Most respondents feel that none of the major airlines truly cares for them. The time has come for customers to demand more from their air travel experiences,” said Dwight Harris, Jr., founder and CEO of DataScalp. “Only 0.4% more respondents out of 1,000 believe the state of air travel is improving than those who say it isn’t. The industry needs to make a seismic shift in customer experience if it ever wants to achieve 100% customer satisfaction.”

Democrats (63%) were significantly more likely to say air travel is getting better than Republicans (37%).

America’s most- and least-liked airlines

Certain airlines were identified as the “most liked” and “least liked,” and both those groups are clustered, meaning there isn’t a lot of variation in the responses. American Airlines (16%) and Southwest (15%) are the most liked airlines, with Delta Air Lines and United Airlines tied for third place at 13%.

The least liked airlines are JetBlue Airways (7%) and Alaska Airlines (5%.)

Politics also played a role here: Republicans chose Southwest as the favorite (21%) and Democrats chose American Airlines (17%).

One reason for the clustering among the most-liked airlines has to do with customer loyalty. While price plays a role in travel decisions, customer experience ultimately determines whether consumers will continue to do business with an airline.

For example, when respondents were asked which airline truly cares for them, their selections were like the favorites: American Airlines (15%) and Southwest (14%), with United (12%) and Delta (11%) following. Alaska Airlines, Air Canada and British Airways are believed to care the least about their customers as evidenced by their clustered ratings at 3%. However, most Americans are more familiar with domestic airlines. JetBlue at 6% followed Alaska as the least caring domestic airline.

What travelers dislike most about airlines are flight delays (45%), cancellations (18%) and lost luggage (24%). While airlines can’t control all the factors that cause these frustrations, such as extreme weather which causes delays and cancellations, the airlines are held responsible for them, nevertheless.

“Customers have dealt with these issues with both large and small airlines for so long that it has become normalized,” said Harris. “Their customers want to share these bad experiences with specifics so others can avoid the same experience.”

Many consumers have resolved never to patronize certain airlines again because their experiences were so awful. Spirit (13%) topped the list, with United coming in second at 9%. While Singapore Airlines (3%) and Air Canada (4%) appear to have fared the best, fewer Americans have traveled with these airlines compared to domestic airlines. The domestic airlines least likely to lose customers according to respondents are Southwest and Frontier Airlines at 5% each.

United (12%), Spirit (11%) and American (10%) are considered the most obnoxious, even though these airlines are among the most liked. While Air Canada (3%) and British Airways (4%) appear to provide the most pleasant experience, fewer American passengers have patronized these airlines than their American counterparts. The least obnoxious domestic airlines are Southwest (6%) and Delta (7%).

“Airline customer frustration isn’t new. The difference today is that consumers have many more channels to voice their frustrations,” said Harris. “As the world becomes increasingly digital, customers have more channels to vent their frustrations, including email, airline website customer complaint forms, app ratings and reviews, social media, and now Airlines must pay attention to what customers are saying in these channels and adjust their operations accordingly. Otherwise, a competitor is just one click away.”

DataScalp: The cure for common airline traveler frustration

DataScalp is a new AI-powered tool that is revolutionizing the way airlines approach data analysis. With DataScalp, airlines can quickly extract insights from a vast amount of data about them, allowing them to make informed decisions about how to improve their operations.

Today, airlines face several challenges, including rising fuel costs, increased competition and changing customer demands. These challenges are making it more important than ever for airlines to find new ways of streamlining their operations and reduce costs.

DataScalp provides airlines with a powerful new tool to help them overcome these challenges. The tool uses advanced AI algorithms to automatically analyze large amounts of data, providing airlines with valuable insights in real time. This allows airlines to make better decisions about everything from flight routes and pricing to customer service and operations.

One of DataScalp’s key features is its ability to automatically identify patterns and trends in data, even in large and complex datasets. This allows airlines to identify opportunities quickly and easily for cost savings and improved efficiency.

“DataScalp is a powerful tool that is helping airlines overcome the challenges they are facing and improve their operations. By providing real-time insights into their data, DataScalp is helping airlines make more informed decisions and stay ahead of the competition,” said Harris. “The data from this survey clearly indicates that airline customers are unhappy with the state of the air travel industry, and they are not overly optimistic about improvement. Power needs to be given back to the customers for airlines to truly provide better flying experiences.”

About DataScalp 
DataScalp is capturing and incorporating the “voice of the customer” to the highest level imaginable by providing a consumer platform that ranks businesses based upon voice of the customer data. Businesses such as airlines can use the data to improve services, inventory management, dynamic pricing, internal operations, and customer experience.

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