Which airlines rank? Which are plain rank? Ask Skytrax
We've just stumbled upon Skytrax, which carries reviews for over 620 airlines and 645 airports, as well as flight, lounge and seat reviews. It's like Trip Advisor for air travel, with several dozen new customer reviews added every day.
Each airline is also awarded a star ranking by Skytrax itself; a 1 star rating is described as representing:
"very poor standards of Product across all travel categories, with poor, inconsistent standards of Staff Service delivery in Onboard and Airport environments"
While a 5 star airline is one that demonstrates:
"...the highest standard of Product across the different quality assessment categories, and consistently high standards of Staff Service delivery in Onboard and Airport environments"
Airlines are awarded star rankings across various criteria, which provide the overall rating. So how do the airlines we use on a regular basis stack up? Place your bets, ladies and gentlemen:
Ryanair - 2 Star ranking
Not entirely a surprise, this. For website booking and customer support, Ryanair air scored 1/5 in nine of the 16 criteria. Overall, out of 57 measures, Ryanair scored no higher than three stars in any of them, and just one star in over a third. In the interests of fairness (I know, I know) it's worth pointing out that Ryanair is judged on a different set of criteria to the other airlines listed here.
Easyjet - 3 Star ranking
One four star ranking sneaking in here - quality of food sold - while the only one star ratings are for Amenities / Blankets / Pillows / Towels etc and General Ground Service handling. However the reviews for Speedy Boarding provided by passengers (which we warned against yesterday) prove why this optional extra is best avoided.
Monarch Airlines - 0 star rating
This isn't as dreadful as it sounds; according to the website, such a ranking indicates "airlines that are still subject to evaluation, and/or airlines where the star rating has been suspended". There are currently 228 customer reviews - a read through their ratings suggest Monarch would be a 3 star airline. The biggest complaints appear to be the width of the seats and the cramped conditions of the planes that fly long-haul routes.
BMI Baby - 2 star rating
A lowly two star rating for BMI Baby from Skytrax, and some appalling tales concerning customer services from those who have booked flights. Cancellations seem to be the number one cause of the complaints, as well as a complete ignorance of EU regulations concerning refunds.
Jet2 - 0 star rating
No official rating from Skytrax, but several people irritated by the cost of booking standard seats, and several more dissatisfied with the state of the planes: "With an average fleet age of 20.5 years, Jet2's B737-700's are showing their age with an aged interior and exhausted fuselages."
There's much, much more for you totrawl through at your leisure at airlinequality.com.