Delta Ranked Best Overall Airline by WalletHub

When considering 14 different metrics, including “baggage and departures,” “animal incidents,” “in-flight comfort and cost” and “safety,” WalletHub determined that Delta Air Lines is the best overall airline of 2023. Delta also ranked first among “Most Reliable Airlines” and “Best Airlines for Pets.”

In all, WalletHub compared the nine largest U.S. airlines, plus two regional carriers, across 14 categories. These range from cancelation and delay rates to baggage mishaps and in-flight comfort. Also considered were costs in relation to in-flight amenities for the sake of fairness. (For example, WalletHub says it wouldn’t be right to penalize an airline that charges for drinks if its tickets are far cheaper than those from an airline with free in-flight refreshments.)

Following closely on the heels of Delta’s 66.79 points is Spirit Airlines, with a score of 66.57, earning it the top spot among “Most Affordable Airlines.” The remainder of the top five were: SkyWest Airlines (63.71), United Airlines (62.83) and Alaska Airlines (59.03). It probably won’t come as a surprise to see Southwest Airlines—which suffered its second mass cancelation event in the past five months on Tuesday—trail the pack with a score of 23.39 (which is over 20 points lower than 10th-place airline Frontier).

Key findings included:

  • Most Reliable Airline: Delta Air Lines has the lowest rate of cancelations, delays, mishandled luggage and denied boardings
  • Most Comfortable Airline: JetBlue leads the pack in terms of in-flight experience, offering free amenities such as Wi-Fi, extra legroom, and complimentary snacks and beverages.
  • Most Affordable Airline: Spirit Airlines is the best airline for budget flyers.
  • Most Pet-Friendly: Three airlines tied for being most pet-friendly, Delta Air Lines, Alaska Airlines and SkyWest, with no incidents.
  • Safest Airline: Envoy Air is the safest in 2023. The safety runner-up is Spirit Airlines.

Source: WalletHub

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