‘Which?’ reveals the best and worst airlines

Jet2 Boeing 757 G-LASH lines up for takeoff.
Photo Credit: Thomas Saunders/AviationSource

This week, UK consumer watch service Which? revealed its regular scores for the best and worst airlines, with the data showing Jet2.com tops the short-haul economy poll and WizzAir coming in at the bottom.

The ratings are based on survey results performed by the consumer review organisation in October 2022 in which it asked over 8,000 adults about their flying experiences over the last two years.

The survey results state that only airlines rated by at least 30 respondents are included. The survey includes factors such as on-time performance, customer service and cabin comfort.

The Good…

Jet2.com ranked top of the polls of economy short-haul airlines. The Leeds-based airline achieved an 80% customer score, 2 points ahead of legacy flag carrier Turkish Airlines.

The top three airlines, which also includes Finnair, in the short-haul economy category achieved only a 0.5% rating of last-minute cancellations.

The impressive cancellation results come from two years marred by unpredictable pandemic travel restrictions and a summer 2022 performance that saw widespread operational issues across Europe.

The disruption can be seen in the on-time performance (OTP) results – figures that show how many departures leave within 15 minutes of the scheduled time.

Jet2.com was ranked 20th for on-time performance, behind British Airways and easyJet. Even with this OTP result, the operator ranked 5 stars for customer service.

Jet2.com will add this accolade to its recent achievement of overtaking TUI as the UK’s largest tour operator.

For long-haul operators, Emirates achieved first place with a score of 80%. It achieved 5 stars for four of the cabin comfort metrics: in-flight entertainment, cabin cleanliness, cabin environment and overall customer service.

The Dubai-based carrier polled 2 points ahead of UK airline Virgin Atlantic and 6 points ahead of fellow United Arab Emirates carrier, Etihad.

Photo Credit: Emirates

The Bad…

On the flip side of the survey, there were some negative results for some of the largest short-haul operators in Europe.

The survey results even jest that Ryanair frequently achieve bottom spot frequently but this year WizzAir achieved that particular accolade, scoring only a 48% customer score. It achieved the second worst on-performance result with 56%, second only to TUI Airways on 45%.

The Budapest-based low-cost carrier has expanded significantly in recent years from its Eastern Europe heartland network to rival Ryanair for European dominance. However, the carrier did not achieve more than 2 stars in all customer metrics.

Again on long-haul, legacy carriers such as British Airways and Lufthansa polled bottom with customer scores of 59% and 57% respectively. Both of the airlines only scored 2 stars on value for money and on-board food and drink offerings.

…and the rest!

Which? nominated various ‘Recommended Providers’ and in this poll they are allocated to airlines that achieved a customer score of at least 70%. Jet2.com and Norwegian were the only operators nominated.

Recommendations are not given to airlines with above average cancellation figures, such as Virgin Atlantic, and to those airlines with punitive ‘no-show’ clauses – if a passenger misses their outbound flight through no fault of their own, the operator may cancel the return flight.

This included Emirates, Etihad, Finnair and Turkish Airlines. Two operators were also no given recommendations due to a poor result on the value for money metric, namely Swiss Air and Channel Islands-based Aurigny.

As European summer is fast approaching, with seat capacity struggling to keep up with an insatiable post-pandemic passenger demand for travel, the results will provide needed confidence to the winners and sober reading for the poor performers.

Full results can be viewed on the Which? website here.

By Jack K Byrne 5 Min Read
5 Min Read
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