First, the good news. The number of air travel service complaints fell 12% in October compared to a month earlier, according to a report from the U.S. Department of Transportation. The bad news? Complaints are still 370% above pre-pandemic levels in 2019.
The number of complaints remained sky-high not for lack of trying. Last summer, a new airline customer service dashboard debuted online to help travelers determine what services they could get after a flight cancellation or delay. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg even asked U.S. airlines to improve service, which produced some results.
Previously, no airline guaranteed meals or hotels after a flight cancelation or delay, and now all 10 large U.S. airlines provide meals on request, should passengers face a wait of three or more hours for a new flight after a cancellation. Moreover, nine of the 10 major U.S. airlines provide hotels on request after a delay or cancellation caused by the airline.