Think twice before booking your next plane ticket. Two new studies offer insights on what airline to fly through on your next vacation.

WalletHub analyzed nine of the largest U.S. airlines and one regional carrier based on 13 categories. The verdict is in: Alaska Airlines flies above the rest, scoring 68.07 out of 100.

Check out the rest of the rankings:

  • Alaska Airlines: 68.07
  • SkyWest Airlines: 65.96
  • Spirit Airlines: 65.69
  • Delta Air Lines: 61.56
  • United Airlines: 51.96
  • JetBlue Airways: 51.60
  • Hawaiian Airlines: 48.30
  • American Airlines: 46.52
  • Frontier Airlines: 43.57
  • Southwest Airlines: 36.03

But depending on what metric matters most to you, a different airline might come out on top.

Looking for the most bang for your buck? Spirit Airlines matched its ultra-low-cost reputation by earning the title of most affordable, with an airfare cost of just 5.23 cents per mile—less than a third the cost of flying with American. Spirit is also the safest airline in 2024, with Alaska Airlines trailing only shortly behind. But, bummer, Spirit earned a comfort score of a measly 0.5 out of five. WalletHub says comfort and convenience are at the top of customers’ priorities this year, which is perhaps why Spirit didn’t quite make the cut.

Delta Air Lines is thriving in comfort and reliability. If you’re heading somewhere urgently, Delta might be your best shot, with the lowest rate of flight cancellations, delays, and denied boardings. It’s also the least likely to lose your luggage. Bonus: Delta offers more in-flight amenities than most—think Wi-Fi, legroom, and freebies from the beloved snack trolley. That’s why it earned a perfect score in comfort.

Alaska Airlines’ consistently high rankings make it your overall best bet. Unfortunately, it scored the worst in mishandled baggage. However, its perfect safety scores make it worth it. And the amenities are solid too… free pretzels and Biscoff cookies, anyone?

J.D. Power came out with its own airline ranking last Wednesday. The 2024 North America Airline Satisfaction Study breaks down customer satisfaction based on fare class. The survey considers airline staff, digital tools, ease of travel, trust, onboard experiencepre- and post-flight experience, and value. With air passenger volume up 9.4% for the year, customer satisfaction is more pressing than ever.

Delta Air Lines prevailed for first, business, and premium economy, while Southwest succeeded for economy and basic economy.

Explore these airlines’ scores out of 1,000:


  • Delta Air Lines (743)
  • JetBlue Airways (736)
  • United Airlines (698)
  • Alaska Airlines (695)
  • American Airlines (676)
  • Air Canada (629)

Premium Economy

  • Delta Air Lines (743)
  • Alaska Airlines (687)
  • American Airlines (684)
  • JetBlue Airways (667)
  • WestJet (664)
  • United Airlines (641)
  • Air Canada (628)

Economy/Basic Economy

  • Southwest Airlines (685)
  • Delta Air Lines (651)
  • Allegiant Air (663)
  • Alaska Airlines (630)
  • JetBlue Airways (630)
  • American Airlines (611)
  • WestJet (591)
  • United Airlines (585)
  • Air Canada (542)
  • Spirit Airlines (507)
  • Frontier Airlines (472)

“The big takeaway from this year’s study is the power of people to positively influence the overall flight experience,” says Michael Taylor, J.D. Power’s senior managing director of travel, hospitality, retail, and customer service. “Airlines that are investing in staff training and recruitment are finding ways to overcome the negative effects of crowded gates and planes simply by being nice to their customers.”

WalletHub’s winner, Alaska Airlines, hangs in the upper middle for customer satisfaction. Southwest’s high customer satisfaction in economy and basic economy fares sharply contrasts its WalletHub spot in dead last.

Understand what your priorities are and you can use these rankings to find the right one for you. The journey is just as important as the destination, so whether you’re looking for cheap fare or more amenities, the sky’s the limit.

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