The best airlines in America in 2022, according to JD Power Report

What is the best airline in the United States? It’s a question a lot of people are asking now that travel has come back to life. JD Power, a global leader in consumer insights, data and analytics, has just released its annual North American Airline Satisfaction Study, which ranks the best U.S. airlines based on passenger satisfaction in eight metrics, including aircraft, baggage, boarding, check-in; costs and fees, flight crew, on-board services and reservation.

JD Power has been tracking the state of the airline industry since 1993, and this year, for the first time, the company divided the rankings into three areas: America’s Best Airlines for First/Business Class, America’s Best Airlines for to fly premium economy and top economy/basic economy airlines, allowing for three winners. “We did it to align with the way consumers buy tickets. Each seat class comes with certain expectations about service and price, and JD Power wanted to collect information about what is important to passengers in each seat class,” says Michael Taylor, travel intelligence leader at JD Power.

This year, JetBlue Airways was the big winner, coming out on top as the best airline in two areas: prime/business and premium economy. Meanwhile, Southwest Airlines was named Best Airline for Economy/Basic Economy.

Digging into the numbers, JetBlue won the top segment/business with a score of 878. Alaska Airlines came in second with a score of 876, while Delta Air Lines was third with a score of 862. In the premium economy segment, JetBlue Airways also ranked first, earning a customer satisfaction score of 851, putting it at the top. Delta Air Lines (837) was second, followed by Alaska Airlines (825) in third place.

In economics/basic economics, Southwest Airlines ranked first with a score of 849. JetBlue Airways (828) ranked second and Delta Air Lines (813) ranked third.

Both Southwest and JetBlue have won multiple JD Power awards in the past. “We’ve been conducting this study since 1993. Southwest’s main strengths are ‘people skills’ and delivering value for the price of the ticket paid. JetBlue’s traditional strength is in-flight entertainment,” says Taylor.

Compare this year’s results to last year’s rankings, when Delta Air Lines held the top spot, the first time the airline won with JD Powers since 1995. What propelled Delta to the top spot last year? “Delta’s victory last year was largely a product of their ‘people’ skills and Delta’s ability to adapt to the changing Covid environment,” says Taylor. “Most of the airlines in the study experienced ups and downs in the study year 2022. Demand for leisure travel increased, assets were redeployed, and labor issues affected almost all airlines. In this year’s study, Delta is among the top three ranked airlines in each seat class.”

A big surprise on this year’s list was Allegiant Air, which took fourth place in the economy segment, beating traditional carriers such as United Airlines (in seventh place) and American Airlines (in ninth place). “Allegiant’s typical boarding process seems to be appreciated by passengers flying Allegiant,” says Taylor.

But Taylor notes that it has been a time of change. “With such a turbulent last two years, it was not unexpected to see changes in the rankings,” he says, noting that “it has been a very unstable industry during the Covid period with many changes in service levels on the plane and with the fleet. that airlines have put into service.

The JD Powers study revealed a few other key findings about the state of air travel in 2022. The big takeaway: consumer satisfaction is down on most measures. Passengers are more frustrated by ticket cost increases, as higher fuel prices and increased demand are driving a 20% increase in average airfares. Upper-class passengers in premium economy and first/budget classes are also frustrated by the food and beverage offerings; above all, they want their free drinks back. On the other hand, the passengers in the back of the economy/basic economy plane were happy. Their food and beverage satisfaction scores increased by 7 points.

So where are things headed? Is the state of air travel going to get better or worse? “Airlines should be able to resolve their fleet, crew and schedule issues by the end of this summer,” Taylor predicts. “But by then, the flying public will probably be focused on the price of a ticket. Fuel costs are expected to be a major price driver if demand continues its current trend.”

To see the full JD Power list, you can view the report here. Or read on for lists of America’s best airlines.

America’s Best Airlines: First/Business Class

  1. JetBlue Airlines
  2. Alaska Airlines
  3. delta airlines
  4. air canada
  5. united airlines
  6. american airlines

America’s Best Airlines: Premium Economy

  1. JetBlue Airlines
  2. delta airlines
  3. Alaska Airlines
  4. american airlines
  5. united airlines
  6. air canada

America’s Best Airlines: Economy/Basic Economy

  1. Southwest Airlines
  2. JetBlue Airlines
  3. delta airlines
  4. loyal air
  5. Alaska Airlines
  6. air canada
  7. Alaska Airlines
  8. spiritual airlines
  9. american airlines
  10. border airlines
  11. WestJet


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