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Air Travel Consumer Report: April 2018 Numbers

Monday, June 18, 2018

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) today released its June 2018 Air Travel Consumer Report (ATCR) on air carrier data compiled for the month of April 2018.  The full consumer report and other aviation consumer matters of interest to the public can be found at

On-Time Performance

In April 2018, the reporting carriers posted an on-time arrival rate of 81.3 percent, up from both the 78.5 percent on-time rate in April 2017 and the 80.9 percent mark in March 2018. 

Highest On-Time Arrival Rates

  1. Hawaiian Airlines – 87.7 percent
  2. Delta Air Lines – 86.4 percent
  3. Mesa Airlines – 85.1 percent

Lowest On-Time Arrival Rates 

  1. JetBlue Airways – 67.6 percent
  2. Frontier Airlines – 76.4 percent
  3. Southwest Airlines – 77.7 percent


In April 2018, the reporting carriers canceled 1.0 percent of their scheduled domestic flights, an improvement over both the 1.6 percent cancellation rate posted in April 2017 and the 2.8 percent rate in March 2018. 

Highest Rates of Canceled Flights

  1. Endeavor Air – 2.6 percent
  2. Republic Airline – 2.5 percent
  3. Envoy Air – 2.4 percent

Lowest Rates of Canceled Flights

  1. Hawaiian Airlines – 0.1 percent
  2. United Airlines – 0.2 percent
  3. Delta Air Lines – 0.3 percent

Tarmac Delays

In April 2018, airlines reported one tarmac delay of more than three hours on domestic flights, equal to one such tarmac delays reported in March 2018.  In April 2018, airlines reported no tarmac delays of more than four hours on international flights, equal to no such tarmac delays reported in March 2018.  All reported extended tarmac delays are investigated by the Department.

Domestic Flights with Longest Tarmac Delays Exceeding Three Hours

  1. Alaska Airlines flight 349 from New York JFK to  Seattle-Tacoma, 4/2/18 – delayed 3 hours and 3 minutes on the tarmac at New York JFK

International Flights with Longest Tarmac Delays Exceeding Four Hours

* There were no international flights in April with tarmac delays exceeding four hours.

Detailed information on airline on-time performance, cancellations, and tarmac delays is available from the Bureau of Transportation Statistics.

Mishandled Baggage

In April 2018, the carriers posted a mishandled baggage rate of 2.39 reports per 1,000 passengers, an improvement over both April 2017’s rate of 2.54 and March 2018’s rate of 2.59. 


Bumping/oversales data, unlike other air carrier data, are reported quarterly rather than monthly.  First quarter 2018 bumping/oversales data were released in the May 2018 Air Travel Consumer Report.  January-June 2018 and second quarter 2018 bumping/oversales data will be available in the August 2018 Air Travel Consumer Report.

Incidents Involving Animals

In April 2018, U.S. airlines reported one incident involving the death, injury, or loss of an animal while traveling by air, equal to the one report filed in April 2017 and down from the three reports filed in March 2018.  April’s incident involved injury to one animal.

Complaints About Airline Service

In April 2018, DOT received 1,169 complaints about airline service from consumers, down 38.7 percent from the total of 1,908 filed in April 2017 and down 2.1 percent from the 1,194 received in March 2018.  

Complaints About Treatment of Disabled Passengers

In April 2018, the Department received a total of 73 disability-related complaints, up from both the 66 complaints received in April 2017 and the 60 complaints received in March 2018.  All complaints alleging discrimination on the basis of disability are investigated.

Complaints About Discrimination

In April 2018, the Department received six complaints alleging discrimination – four complaints regarding race, one complaint regarding color, and one complaint regarding religion.  This is down from both the total of 12 complaints recorded in April 2017 and the nine complaints recorded in March 2018.  All complaints alleging discrimination are investigated to determine if there has been a violation(s) of the passenger’s civil rights.

Consumers may file air travel consumer or civil rights complaints on the web at or by voice mail at (202) 366-2220 or by TTY at (202) 366-0511.  They may also mail a complaint to the Aviation Consumer Protection Division, U.S. Department of Transportation, C-75, W96-432, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE, Washington, DC 20590.

Consumers who want on-time performance data for specific flights should call their airline’s reservation number or their travel agent.  This information is available on the computerized reservation systems used by these agents.  The information is also available on the appropriate carrier’s website.