WASHINGTON, D.C. — Hawaiian Airlines has taken the top spot in the 17th annual national Airline Quality Ratings (AQR) study. This is the first year for Hawaiian Airlines to be included in the ratings. Jet Blue, which had been ranked first for the past three years, slipped to second.
The AQR is a summary of month-by-month quality ratings for the largest domestic U.S. airlines operating during 2006. Co-researchers Brent Bowen, director and professor at the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) Aviation Institute/School of Public Administration, and Dean Headley, associate professor of marketing at Wichita State University (WSU), used 15 elements important to consumers when judging the quality of airline service.
Hawaiian Airlines led the 2006 ratings in the category of best on-time performance. The company’s planes were on-time 93.8% of the time. The airline also had the best baggage handling rate (3.14 mishandled bags per 1,000 passengers) in the rankings. Eighteen airlines were studied in 2006. Other airlines added to the ratings included Frontier and Mesa. For 2006, data of the merged operations of US Airways and America West airlines are combined, and appear only as US Air data.
The AQR scores for the 18 largest airlines for 2006 resulted in the following ranking:
2) Jet Blue
3) Air Tran
13) US Air
17) American Eagle
18) Atlantic Southeast
Source: University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) Aviation Institute/School of Public Administration, and Wichita State University