Airline performance in 2012 was the second highest in 23 years that researchers have tracked their performance, according to the 23rd annual national Airline Quality Rating.
"Passengers are experiencing better performance by the airlines, although it might cost more to fly," said Brent Bowen, professor and head of Purdue University's aviation technology department.
The performance of the nation's leading carriers in 2012 was nearly identical to the best year ever in 2011.
The rankings released Monday (April 8) at the National Press Club show that of the 14 carriers rated for performance in both 2011 and 2012, seven airlines improved, five airlines declined and two are new to the rankings, including the overall No. 1 performing airline, Virgin America.
The Airline Quality Rating is a joint research project funded as part of faculty research activities at Purdue and Wichita State University.
Read more from the Purdue News Service about the full report.