Some airlines are so bad they’re known around the country as the most hated airlines in the United States. Unsurprisingly, these hated airlines have a lot in common. Read on for a closer look at what exactly makes an airline “the worst.”
1. Unreasonable prices
It’s one thing for elite airlines that offer a luxury (or at least a comfortable) flying experience to charge high prices. But an airline that’s neither luxurious nor comfortable shouldn’t be charging luxury prices. Traveling is expensive enough as it is without subpar airlines charging ridiculous prices for a ticket.
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2. Restrictive baggage policies and mishaps
Some airlines today are getting more and more restrictive with what they allow their passengers to fly with in terms of baggage. SkyWest and Delta both are notorious for their baggage issues. In 2017, the Transportation Department even fined Delta $200,000 for underreporting the number of mishandled baggage complaints they received from customers.
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3. They nickel and dime you over every little thing
One of the most notorious airlines guilty of this is Spirit. Spirit is one of the most hated airlines out there and a big part of that is due to the fact that they charge their passengers for every little thing. It costs extra to print your boarding pass, to have a carry-on, and even for a glass of water during the flight. The airline does offer competitively low ticket prices, but by the time you add everything else you’ve been charged for to your total cost, a Spirit ticket isn’t so cheap after all.
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4. Rude customer service
Flying is stressful–passengers want to be on board a flight with kind, helpful, happy airline workers. One airline that’s known for its bad customer service is United. Business Insider reports that the airline has a history of negative customer service run-ins because the airline workers aren’t treated well.
“It’s a top-down culture, meaning, the CEO and other leaders set the atmosphere for the rest of the employees,”Airline expert George Hobica told Business Insider. “The leadership has been pretty abysmal.”
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5. Frequent delays
The last thing you want in the midst of a busy travel day is to experience any major delays. Some airlines, though, just seem to constantly experience this issue. Air Canada is notorious for experiencing delays. According to The Motley Fool, Air Canada is only on-time 76% of the time. “This could imply growing congestion at its serviced routes, signaling that it may need to boost capacity or add more routes to assuage this problem,” surmised the publication.
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6. Complicated boarding processes
We’re all just trying to board the plane in a timely manner and get to where we’re going. Why, then, do some airlines have to make the boarding process so complicated? Southwest, for example, doesn’t have a very efficient boarding process. Passengers are assigned a boarding group upon checking in, but there are no assigned seats. So when your boarding group is called, you and your party just need to cross your fingers and hope for the best.
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7. Uncomfortable seating
You may think it’s worth it to sacrifice a comfortable seating arrangement in order to save some money on a plane ticket, but it usually never is. Even a flight that’s only a couple hours can feel cramped and stiff in a seat that’s less than comfortable. Spirit Airlines, again, is known for its horrible seating.
“With an average of only 28 inches of pitch and no recline (they call them ‘pre-reclined’, but they took out the mechanisms so they’d weigh less), you are likely to feel cramped whatever flight you are on, with the seats begin described as ‘very uncomfortable,'” says The Points Guy of Spirit.
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