June 2012 DOT Data Released

Old Aug 9, 12, 9:37 am
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June 2012 DOT Data Released

Official Release: http://airconsumer.dot.gov/reports/2...012AugATCR.pdf

More of the same poor performance as we've been seeing for the past few months:

  • Most delayed airline -- again below not just the mainline carriers, but below all the regionals as well.
  • Highest cancellation rate of the mainline carriers.
  • Highest rate of mishandled bags of the mainline carriers.
  • Highest DOT complaint rate.
  • This report included the quarterly DB rates for Q2, and again UA was highest IDB rate of the mainline carriers.

What's scary about this is the margin by which UA is doing poorly.

Not only is UA 10% below the average in on time at 69.9% (vs. 80.7% average), they're more than 10 points below the next lowest mainline carrier (AA at 80.3%).

Similarly, the IDB rate is not just worse than everybody else's, it's double the average (2.11 vs. 1.05), double the next mainline carrier (WN at 1.05), and close to triple the next network carrier (US at 0.76).

Same goes for complaint rate -- while the average is 1.87, UA comes in more than 3 times that at 6.86. The next worst carrier has just over 1/3 of UA's rate (US at 2.50).
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Old Aug 9, 12, 9:46 am
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Interesting with the unofficial results I posted for July, it furthers the downward trend of on-time arrivals. I wonder if August can finally stop (or at least slow) the bleeding...
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Old Aug 9, 12, 10:03 am
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note the most chronically delayed flights are all COEX except for the one WN flight

MIshandled bags 80% higher than AA
IDB from 0.93 last year to 2.11 this year.

complaints/100k UA:6.86 AA 1.37
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Old Aug 9, 12, 10:26 am
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We're going to need several more months like this before we'll begin to see changes we like.
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Old Aug 9, 12, 10:31 am
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Interesting -- AA had more weather delays but still had a much better on-time performances than UA. Took 5 carriers and compared them.

Ontime
UA - 70.11% (5)
US - 86.16% (1)
DL - 85.49% (2)
AA - 79.81% (3)
WN - 79.85% (4)

Causes of Delay
Air Carrier Delay
UA - 9.70% (5)
US - 4.08% (1)
DL - 4.54% (2)
AA - 5.82% (3)
WN - 6.23% (4)

Extreme Weather Delay
UA - 0.49% (4)
US - 0.24% (1)
DL - 0.41% (3)
AA - 1.28% (5)
WN - 0.36% (2)

National Aviation System Delay
UA - 8.26% (5)
US - 5.56% (3)
DL - 4.67% (2)
AA - 5.65% (4)
WN - 3.00% (1)

Security Delay
UA - 0.06% (3)
US - 0.08% (4)
DL - 0.00% (1)
AA - 0.04% (2)
WN - 0.08% (4)

Late Arriving Aircraft Delay
UA - 9.47% (4)
US - 2.88% (1)
DL - 4.21% (2)
AA - 5.43% (3)
WN - 9.62% (5)
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Old Aug 9, 12, 10:36 am
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United is failing on every measurable stat I can think of, certainly everything the DOT measures they are well behind the competition. Their most recent quarter and this past month's financial performance (yield) show them to be falling even further behind their major competition (DL,AA).
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Old Aug 9, 12, 10:43 am
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Originally Posted by channa View Post
  • Most delayed airline -- again below not just the mainline carriers, but below all the regionals as well.
  • Highest cancellation rate of the mainline carriers.
  • Highest rate of mishandled bags of the mainline carriers.
  • Highest DOT complaint rate.
  • This report included the quarterly DB rates for Q2, and again UA was highest IDB rate of the mainline carriers.
A few things I'm curious about -

1. To what extent is baggage mishandling due to incompetence and to what extent is it linked with delays, cancellations, and other IRROPS? In other words, are they destroying and misplacing and delaying baggage because of these other factors, or even if we correct those factors, would they still have the worst track record? If the latter, then what's the root cause?

2. Is the huge IDB rate due to conscious policy to over-book planes far more aggressively than any other carrier? If so, this metric points squarely to bad policy decisions aimed at maximizing near term profit no matter what the consequences elsewhere?

Originally Posted by dsquared37 View Post
We're going to need several more months like this before we'll begin to see changes we like.
It will be worth the wait to see this team of buffoons thrown on the street, hopefully without golden parachutes.

Last edited by iluv2fly; Aug 9, 12 at 1:08 pm Reason: merge
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Old Aug 9, 12, 10:59 am
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Originally Posted by mitchmu View Post
It will be worth the wait to see this team of buffoons thrown on the street, hopefully without golden parachutes.
More appropriate to have it under gray skies and golden showers.
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Old Aug 9, 12, 10:59 am
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I say the scariest part is how does United Airlines/United Express get close to 50 percent of all complaints in June 2012
612 Total UA/UX Complaints vs. 1353 for all US airlines combined complaints
Hey Smi/J, that's 45 percent @:-)@:-)@:-)
Pretty sure DOT complaints aren't changes I Like

I can't wait to see the July 2012 stats, who wants to place bets on the percentage especially with 4 Miles Island
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Old Aug 9, 12, 11:30 am
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Originally Posted by dsquared37 View Post
We're going to need several more months like this before we'll begin to see changes we like.
One would hope

It seems like Jeffrey and his team are still blinded by their past ways.

Only two years ago, this was the headline:

United Airlines (Chicago) announced the company was – for the second consecutive year – first in on-time performance for domestic scheduled flights among America’s five largest global carriers for 2010. United ended the year with 85.2 percent of flights arriving at their destinations within 14 minutes of the scheduled arrival time, according to data published by the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) in the Air Travel Consumer report released today.
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Old Aug 9, 12, 11:35 am
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Originally Posted by Short hair Francis View Post
I can't wait to see the July 2012 stats, who wants to place bets on the percentage especially with 4 Miles Island
I've filed 3 or 4 DOT complaints myself. I figure a lot.
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Old Aug 9, 12, 11:38 am
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Originally Posted by mitchmu View Post
2. Is the huge IDB rate due to conscious policy to over-book planes far more aggressively than any other carrier? If so, this metric points squarely to bad policy decisions aimed at maximizing near term profit no matter what the consequences elsewhere?
I think this one is two-fold. Yes, they overbook aggressively, but they also don't handle DBs well.

DL also overbooks aggressively, but DL has nowhere near the IDB numbers that UA has:

VDB rate:
DL: 10.50
UA: 10.66

IDB rate:
DL: 0.38
UA: 2.11


That makes me think it's possible to get enough VDBs if the conditions are right.
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Old Aug 9, 12, 11:43 am
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Originally Posted by channa View Post
IDB rate:
DL: 0.38
UA: 2.11

That makes me think it's possible to get enough VDBs if the conditions are right.
Interesting that UA had the highest IDB rate while at the same time they also had a financially significant lower than predicted use of issued tickets. I wonder what the corollary is there.
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Old Aug 9, 12, 11:53 am
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Originally Posted by channa View Post
I think this one is two-fold. Yes, they overbook aggressively, but they also don't handle DBs well.

DL also overbooks aggressively, but DL has nowhere near the IDB numbers that UA has:

VDB rate:
DL: 10.50
UA: 10.66

IDB rate:
DL: 0.38
UA: 2.11


That makes me think it's possible to get enough VDBs if the conditions are right.
Wow. That's horrible.

The decision to over-book is one thing. If they over-book and convert those to VDB, it means the PAX are satisfied, because the "voluntarily" took an offer and most people won't volunteer to take something they don't want.

So, this means that COdbaUA is actually making a conscious decision NOT to offer the level of compensation that DL is offering, that makes a flyer feel OK with being denied boarding.

Rather, they are just grabbing them and throwing them off the plane, and probably spitting on them while they hit the tarmac.

There are regulations for minimum allowable compensation in IDB cases, right? So, this means that, most likely, CO has decided that they won't pay more than the minimum required by law, and that DL is probably paying more than the minimum required by law, to convert IDB to VDB and end up with a happy PAX.

Seem right?
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Old Aug 9, 12, 11:56 am
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Originally Posted by AeroWesty View Post
Interesting that UA had the highest IDB rate while at the same time they also had a financially significant lower than predicted use of issued tickets. I wonder what the corollary is there.

Well, it's a different metric. That predicted use formula is calculating the percentage of revenue that's been used, so it doesn't mean that the ticket is not flown in that they have a no show. If a ticket is not flown and the revenue is kept, then that would be considered used and they could recognize that revenue at the time the ticket is cancelled (i.e., changes must be made by time of travel or ticket has no value).

What that formula represents in the context of them having to warn on profits like they did a few weeks ago is that they used materially fewer tickets than they had statistically anticipated. What that suggests to me is that they had a higher rate of advance purchases, and a lower rate of closer-in purchases than they had previously, which is what they based their estimates on.

That would also seem to jive with the anecdotal evidence of business customers leaving, not to mention the evidence demonstrated by the lower financial results, as business customers tend to pay higher fares and book closer in.

Originally Posted by mitchmu View Post
So, this means that COdbaUA is actually making a conscious decision NOT to offer the level of compensation that DL is offering, that makes a flyer feel OK with being denied boarding.
That certainly could be part of it. Another part may be the ability to reaccommodate effectively. A cheap bump may be fine if the reaccommodation is good (e.g., minimal delay, quality seat on rebook, etc.).

However, I have seen a number of lowball offers from COdbaUA that are for $200 for an overnight. While it may work in some cases, it may not work so well in others.


Originally Posted by mitchmu View Post
There are regulations for minimum allowable compensation in IDB cases, right? So, this means that, most likely, CO has decided that they won't pay more than the minimum required by law, and that DL is probably paying more than the minimum required by law, to convert IDB to VDB and end up with a happy PAX.
IDB compensation is regulated, and in many cases is more than the VDB compensation offered. I've heard many stories from GAs where they are writing significant checks, sometimes $1,000 or more, for IDBs.

Last edited by iluv2fly; Aug 9, 12 at 1:09 pm Reason: merge
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