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Airlines improve on-time rate in July, consumer complaints up

An American Airlines Boeing 737 taxis to Terminal C at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport. (Star-Telegram/Rodger Mallison)
An American Airlines Boeing 737 taxis to Terminal C at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport. (Star-Telegram/Rodger Mallison) Star-Telegram

With good weather for most of July, U.S. airlines reported a on-time arrival rate of 78.1 percent but consumers were not happy with the airline service they received during one of the busiest summer travel months.

The Department of Transportation received 2,163 complains about airline service from consumers in July, up 31.1 percent from July 2014, according to a government report released Thursday.

The on-time rate was an improvement from the 74.8 percent rate in June and 75.6 percent on-time rate in July 2014.

Spirit Airlines, who only had half of its flights arrive on time in June, improved its operational performance to 68.7 percent of its flights arriving on time in July. However, that on-time arrival rate was the worst among the largest U.S. airlines for the month.

Hawaiian Airlines posted the best on-time rate with 88.6 percent of its flights arriving on time. Fort Worth-based American Airlines ranked fourth with an on-time rate of 80.0 percent while Dallas-based Southwest Airlines had the third worst on-time rate with only 73.5 percent of its flights arriving on time.

The BTS said there were no tarmac delays over three hours in July.

Airlines canceled only 0.9 percent of their scheduled flights, the lowest for any July in over twenty years. Envoy Air, which is owned by American Airlines, had the highest rate of canceled flights with 2.6 percent of its schedule canceled in July.

Carriers also improved their mishandled baggage rate to 3.22 reports per 1,000 passengers, down from 3.49 in July 2014.

Rank

Carrier

On-Time Arrival Rate

1

Hawaiian Airlines

88.6

2

Alaska Airlines

86.4

3

Delta Air Lines

84.2

4

American Airlines

80.0

5

ExpressJet Airlines

78.7

6

SkyWest Airlines

78.7

7

Envoy Air

78.6

8

Virgin America

76.8

9

JetBlue Airways

76.5

10

United Airlines

73.5

10

Southwest Airlines

73.5

12

Frontier Airlines

71.4

13

Spirit Airlines

68.7

Total

78.1

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