Is JetBlue the Best Airline in the U.S.?

JetBlue has lots of fans – and with good reason – but is this discount carrier better than any other U.S. airline? It is if you believe a new consumer satisfaction survey from J.D. Power and Associates.

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JetBlue Wins 9 Years in a Row

Maybe you know J.D. Power as the people who tell you which cars to buy, but they also monitor the airline industry and they’ve just ranked JetBlue number one among low-cost carriers. In fact it’s getting pretty monotonous – they’ve had JetBlue in the top spot for the past nine years.

JetBlue also scored more points than the number one airline in the traditional or legacy carrier segment: Alaska Airlines had 717 points overall, while JetBlue earned 787.

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Alaska Wins in Legacy Carrier Category

And earned is the word, as the ranking came from people who fly all these airlines and rate them on everything from making reservations to the boarding experience. Both JetBlue and Alaska¬†were officially deemed, “among the best.”

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So Where was Southwest?

Southwest followed JetBlue as a not-so-distant number two for low-cost carriers, then – a fairly steep drop-off. Here are the top five for discounters and legacy carriers (airline names are followed by points received and its meaning according to the J.D. Power ratings legend):

Overall Satisfaction – Low-Cost Carriers

  1. JetBlue – 787 points, “Among the best”
  2. Southwest – 770 points, “Better than most”
  3. WestJet – 714 points, “The rest”
  4. Frontier – 708 points, “The rest”
  5. AirTran – 705 points, “The rest”

Overall Satisfaction, Legacy Airlines

  1. Alaska – 717 points, “Among the best”
  2. Delta – 682 points, “Better than most”
  3. Air Canada – 671 points, “About average”
  4. American – 660 points, “About average”
  5. United – 641 points, “The rest”

JetBlue is “Stoked”

JetBlue is not perfect – it had some rough times a couple of years back – as did its passengers who were trapped on the tarmac for hours during a snowstorm – but it quickly apologized and tried to make things right, and such gestures it seems¬†are appreciated. Meanwhile, the airline took note of this latest honor by blogging, “We’re stoked,” then proceeded to thank all its customers and its 15,000 employees before adding, “Let’s just say if we were accepting a Tony Award or an Oscar, we’d very quickly get ushered off the stage.”

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Published: May 15, 2013