WASHINGTON, D.C. (WWLP) – A report issued by the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) found that consumer complaints against airlines were down from April to May but are still 200 percent higher than pre-pandemic levels.

The report compiles data on the quality of services provided by airlines including on-time performance, consumer complaints received mishandled baggage, and mishandled wheelchairs and scooters. 

 In May 2022 there were 590,957 flights compared to 680,165 flights in pre-pandemic May 2019. Also in May 2022 the 10 marketing network carriers reported 602,950 scheduled domestic flights with 11,993 (2.0%) canceled. 

The on-time arrival rate of 77.2% was up from 76.0% in April 2022 and down from 77.9% in pre-pandemic May 2019. The year-to-date on-time arrival rate for 2022 is 76.5%.

Image courtesy U.S. Department of Transportation.

DOT received 4,344 complaints about airline service from consumers in May 2022, down from the 5,079 in April 2022 and up from the 1,289 complaints in May 2019. Those complaints included refunds, cancellations/delays/missed connections/schedule changes, tarmac delays, mishandled/lost baggage, mishandled/lost wheelchairs and scooters, bumping/oversales, and incidents involving animals, treatment of disabled passengers, and discrimination.

Consumers may file air travel consumer or civil rights complaints online or by voicemail at (202) 366-2220, or by mail to the Aviation Consumer Protection Division, U.S. Department of Transportation, C-75, W96-432, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE, Washington, DC 20590.

The ATCR and other information on aviation consumer rights can be found at this link.