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Hawaiian Airlines among most punctual

Updated: 
June 10, 2014 - 10:29am

Hawaiian Airlines has top spot in on-time ratings

The federal government counts a flight as on-time if it arrives within 14 minutes of schedule. Here are the government’s rankings of the 14 leading airlines and their on-time performance in April:

1. Hawaiian Airlines, 94.0 percent

2. Alaska Airlines, 90.3 percent

3. Virgin America, 86.5 percent

4. Delta Air Lines, 85.2 percent

5. AirTran Airways, 84.6 percent (asterisk)

6. US Airways, 83.3 percent (asterisk)(asterisk)

7. American Airlines, 82.3 percent (asterisk)(asterisk)

8. United Airlines, 81.8 percent

9. SkyWest, 80.9 percent

10. Frontier Airlines, 79.7 percent

11. JetBlue Airways, 77.4 percent

12. Envoy, 75.2 percent (asterisk)(asterisk)(asterisk)

13. Southwest Airlines, 74.2 percent (asterisk)

14. ExpressJet, 74.2 percent

Total for all reporting airlines: 79.6 percent

(asterisk) owned by Southwest Airlines Co.

(asterisk)(asterisk) owned by American Airlines Group Inc.

(asterisk)(asterisk)(asterisk) formerly American Eagle

Source: U.S. Department of Transportation

WASHINGTON — Airlines are doing a better job of arriving on time, although more than one in five flights still run late.

The U.S. Transportation Department said Tuesday that the nation’s biggest airlines achieved an on-time arrival rating of 79.6 percent in April. That is up from 77.6 percent in March and 77.3 percent in April 2013.

The most punctual airlines were Hawaiian, Alaska and Virgin America. The most likely to be late were ExpressJet, Southwest Airlines and Envoy, which used to be called American Eagle.

The government said that canceled flights were down — 1.1 percent of domestic flights, compared with 1.8 percent in April 2013. And no domestic flights were stuck on the ground for more than three hours, although one international flight remained on the tarmac for four hours, exceeding the limit in federal rules.

The airlines reported that for every 1,000 passengers in April, there were 2.92 bags that were lost, stolen, damaged or delayed, down slightly from the 3.07 rate in April 2013. Virgin America rated best at bag handling, while Envoy was worst by a wide margin.

Complaints to the government rose 16 percent, but the number of consumers who filed a formal complaint remained tiny — 1,259 complaints out of 483,499 flights that were tracked. Southwest had the lowest rate of complaints; Frontier Airlines had the highest.

The Transportation Department report covers 12 airline companies but excludes smaller carriers such as Spirit Airlines and Allegiant Air because their revenue from domestic flights is less than 1 percent of the industry total.