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Air Travel Consumer Report: May 2018 Numbers

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

On-Time Performance

In May 2018, the reporting carriers posted an on-time arrival rate of 79.4 percent, up from the 79.1 percent on-time rate in May 2017, but down from the 81.3 percent mark in April 2018. 

Highest On-Time Arrival Rates

  1. Hawaiian Airlines – 90.8 percent
  2. Delta Air Lines – 85.0 percent
  3. Endeavor Air – 83.2 percent

Lowest On-Time Arrival Rates

  1. JetBlue Airways – 71.0 percent
  2. Frontier Airlines – 71.8 percent
  3. PSA Airlines – 75.0 percent

Cancellations

In May 2018, the reporting carriers canceled 1.2 percent of their scheduled domestic flights, up from both the 0.8 percent cancellation rate posted in May 2017 and the 1.0 percent rate in April 2018. 

Highest Rates of Canceled Flights

  1. Envoy Air – 3.7 percent
  2. Republic Airline – 2.6 percent
  3. PSA Airlines – 2.3 percent

Lowest Rates of Canceled Flights

  1. Delta Air Lines – 0.0 percent*
  2. Hawaiian Airlines – 0.1 percent
  3. Allegiant Air – 0.3 percent

*Delta Air Lines canceled 23 flights in May.

Tarmac Delays

In May 2018, airlines reported 12 tarmac delays of more than three hours on domestic flights, compared to one such tarmac delay reported in April 2018 and 26 tarmac delays reported in May 2017.  In May 2018, airlines reported four tarmac delays of more than four hours on international flights, compared to no such tarmac delays reported in April 2018 and no tarmac delays reported in May 2017.  Extended tarmac delays are investigated by the Department.

Domestic Flights with Longest Tarmac Delays Exceeding Three Hours

  1. Spirit Airlines flight 695 from Baltimore/Washington International Airport to Las Vegas, 5/12/18 – delayed 3 hours and 53 minutes on the tarmac in St. Louis after being diverted
  2. United Airlines flight 1926 from New York LaGuardia to Houston Bush, 5/26/18 – delayed 3 hours and 43 minutes on the tarmac at Houston Hobby after being diverted
  3. Trans States Airlines flight 4285 from Washington Reagan National to Grand Rapids, Mich., 5/31/18 – delayed 3 hours and 36 minutes on the tarmac at Washington Reagan National

International Flights with Longest Tarmac Delays Exceeding Four Hours

  1. Air India flight 127 from Delhi, India to Chicago O’Hare, 5/9/18 – delayed 5 hours and 50 minutes on the tarmac in Milwaukee, Wis. after being diverted
  2. Japan Airlines flight 4 from Tokyo Narita to Washington Dulles, 5/15/18 – delayed 4 hours and 59 minutes on the tarmac at Washington Dulles
  3. Aer Lingus flight 125 from Dublin, Ireland to Chicago O’Hare, 5/2/18 – delayed 4 hours and 57 minutes on the tarmac in Milwaukee, Wis. after being diverted

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

Mishandled Baggage

In May 2018, the carriers posted a mishandled baggage rate of 2.59 reports per 1,000 passengers, up from both May 2017’s rate of 2.32 and April 2018’s rate of 2.39. 

Bumping/Oversales

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 May 2018, U.S. airlines reported three incidents involving the death, injury, or loss of an animal while traveling by air, up from the one report filed in both May 2017 and in April 2018.  May’s incidents involved the death of one animal and injuries to two other animals.

Complaints About Airline Service

In May 2018, DOT received 1,102 complaints about airline service from consumers, down 38.2 percent from the total of 1,784 filed in May 2017 and down 5.7 percent from the 1,169 received in April 2018.  

Complaints About Treatment of Disabled Passengers

In May 2018, the Department received a total of 66 disability-related complaints, down from both the 80 complaints received in May 2017 and the 73 complaints received in April 2018.  All complaints alleging discrimination on the basis of disability are investigated.

Complaints About Discrimination

In May 2018, the Department received nine complaints alleging discrimination – six complaints regarding race, one complaint regarding national origin, one complaint regarding color, and one complaint regarding sex.  This is equal to the total of nine complaints recorded in May 2017 and up from the six complaints recorded in April 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 http://airconsumer.dot.gov/escomplaint/ConsumerForm.cfm 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.

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Updated: Wednesday, July 25, 2018
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