These Are the Worst (and Best) Airlines in the World, Study Says

You get what you pay for

Ryanair close up as it gets closer to the runway
Jevgenij Kulikov / Getty Images

Everyone loves a good deal on airfare, but how low are you willing to go? According to a new study by luggage storage company Bounce, some of the worst airlines in the world are low-cost carriers, primarily in the Americas and Europe.

To determine its rankings, Bounce took into consideration data about airlines' punctuality, baggage allowance, staff service, seat comfort, meals, and the number of complaints received. Then, they crunched those numbers to determine an airline's index score out of a possible 10.

At the very bottom of the domestic airline rankings are Spirit Airlines (score: 2.5) and Allegiant Air (2.8), both of which are budget carriers. But the third worst U.S. airline is one of the big three: American Airlines. Bounce gave the airline a pretty low score of 4.2; it's still vastly better than Spirit and Allegiant, but far below the top domestic scorer, Delta Air Lines, which earned an 8.9.

Then on the international side, we have Viva Air Colombia, which scored just one out of five in each of the judged categories for an index score of 3.4. The best thing the airline has going for it? It somehow had the second-fewest complaints of all international airlines between January and June 2021, per the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Following Viva Air Colombia is Mexico's Viva Aerobus (3.6), Volaris Airlines (4.0), and Ireland's Ryanair (4.2), best known for its backpacker-friendly fares across Europe.

On the other end of the spectrum, the world's best airlines are a bevy of Asian carriers, including Ana All Nippon Airways (9.6) and Singapore Airlines (9.5).

It seems that in the case of airlines, you definitely get what you pay for. For the full list of rankings and details about the study's methodology, head to Bounce's blog.

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