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Spirit Airlines Now On Time More Than Two Major Airlines

by SharonKurheg

We’ve made our disdain (is disdain too harsh? OK, OK…our scorn) for Spirit Airlines (and its ilk of Frontier, Allegiant and the U.K.-based RyanAir) known on more than one occasion. Besides not being thrilled with their nickel-and-dime method of pricing, they just haven’t had a good reputation when it comes to customer service or being on time. But to that end, I will give credit where credit is due.

We already reported a few months ago that Spirit was working with Disney to improve their customer service. And now, apparently, they’re improving their record of being on time, as well. So much so that as of November 2017 (as of this writing, that’s the most recent month when on-time performance has been reported), they’ve improved their on-time performance to (we had to sit down for this one) #2 in the nation!

Delta is #1, with a 93.7% on-time record and Spirit is #2, with 89.8%. To round out the Top Five, Hawaiian was #3 (89.3%), American was #4 (88.8%) and United was #5 (88.6%). The lowest ranked airline for on-time flights was Virgin America, #12, at 77.5%. To help compare, in November 2016, Spirit was ranked #5 for being on time (86.4%) and in November 2015, they were next-to-last in the nation, with an on time percentage of only 75.3%.


November 2017 on-time performance data from the Bureau of Transportation Statistics

“Our commitment to improve our guests’ experience is dependent on our operational performance, and we have dedicated ourselves to continuing to match and exceed the industry standards for on-time performance,” said Greg Christopher, a Spirit vice president, said in a November press release.

Spirit’s new CEO, Bob Fornaro took over in 2016. Whereas his predecessor’s main goals for the airline were based on super low fares, multiple fees and marketing, Fornaro is focused more on schedule reliability, seeing it as a pathway to better service, less complaints and more repeat customers. Spirit’s website has also been updated under his watch, to make it more user friendly.

Along with an improvement in their on-time statistics, Spirit is apparently doing better in the number of complaints, as well. In November 2015, the Department of Transportation received 160 complaints against Spirit. In November of 2017? 62 Complaints…a 61% decrease.

Geesh, if they keep this up, we won’t be able to make fun of them anymore!

A HUGE thank-you to Scott F. for his heads up about this topic!

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[…] is doing better. I know they partnered with Disney to increase their customer service, and they’re getting better at being on time. But really, when you practically need a road map to find out how much your final ticket price will […]


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