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The tail section of an Airbus 320 operated by Spirit Airlines is seen as it approaches for landing at Baltimore Washington International Airport near Baltimore, Maryland on March 11, 2019. (Photo by Jim WATSON / AFP) (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)

Delta Air Lines has topped a new report that ranks the best US airlines based on on-time performance, mishandled baggage, involuntary denied boardings and consumer complaints. The study also revealed that US air travel is, on the whole, getting better, with fewer reports of lost luggage, overbooked flights and general passenger complaints.

Delta Airlines had fewer reports of lost luggage.  Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images

The annual Airline Quality Rating, now in its 29th year, comes from professors at Wichita State University and Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, who used 2018 data from the US Department of Transportation to compile the report.

Delta was the only airline to improve in all four categories, jumping from the No 2 spot last year. This year’s list also had JetBlue, Southwest and Alaska in top spots at No. 2, 3 and 4, respectively. Discount carrier Frontier Airlines was at the bottom of this year’s ranking, thanks to customer complaints, delayed flights and bumped passengers, the report says.

The full 2019 ranking is:

  1. Delta
  2. JetBlue
  3. Southwest
  4. Alaska
  5. Hawaiian
  6. United
  7. Spirit
  8. American
  9. Frontier

Spirit Airlines heads list for baggage handling.Photo by: JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images

According to the report, Spirit Airlines is the best carrier for handling passenger luggage, with just 1.76 cases of mishandled baggage per 1000 passengers, while American misplaces 3.83 bags per 1000 passengers – the most out of all airlines. For on-time arrivals, Hawaiian Airlines is your best bet, with 89.3% of planes touching down as scheduled. The worst? Frontier, which has just 69.4% of scheduled flights arriving on time.

The post New study ranks best (and worst) airlines in the US appeared first on Lonely Planet Travel News.

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