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American Airlines is the rudest U.S. airline, survey says

Dec 31, 2012 12:40 am

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A passengers’ flight experience is highly subjective depending on the flyer, airline, and flying circumstances so a study based on a small sampling of just 1,000 travelers is pretty meaningless. Still, we’re talking about American.

— Samantha Shankman

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Grant Wickes  / Flickr.com

An empty American Airlines check-in desk at Dallas-Fort Worth Airport. Grant Wickes / Flickr.com


Almost everyone who flies often has run into a rude airline worker. So which airline has the rudest employees?

According to a survey of more than 1,000 travelers, American Airlines tops the list, with 25% of fliers saying the Fort Worth-based carrier has the rudest personnel. United Airlines came in second (21%), followed by Delta Air Lines (18%) and US Airways (12%), according to the survey by the travel website Airfarewatchdog.com.

American Airlines declined to comment on the survey.

Although smaller airlines such as Alaska and Frontier were ranked at the bottom of the list, the website’s founder, George Hobica, doesn’t think the rudeness level is tied to the size of the airline.

Instead, he said that older workers for long-established airlines are probably more jaded, having gone through bankruptcies, layoffs, pay cuts and lost pensions.

“It’s not really surprising,” Hobica said. “The older worker has had a rougher ride.”

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