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Flying The JetBlue Skies

It is not a shock that J.D. Power finds overall customer satisfaction with airlines in 2009 has declined for a third consecutive year to a four-year low. Their studies indicate that the decline is driven by decreased passenger satisfaction with in-flight services, flight crew and costs and fees.

It is a bit surprising to find Alaska Airlines ranked highest in customer satisfaction among traditional network carriers and JetBlue Airways highest among low-cost carriers.

I’m a huge fan of JetBlue and I’m still bummed that they no longer service Nashville. However, I’m a little surprised that they beat out Southwest, an airline that I like and spend a lot of time with these days.

JetBlue performs particularly well in two of seven measures: aircraft and in-flight services. Following JetBlue in the segment rankings are Southwest Airlines and WestJet, in a tie.

Alaska Airlines performs particularly well in five of seven measures: flight crew; aircraft; boarding/ deplaning/baggage; check-in; and reservation.

JetBlue does a lot of things right and I have to believe that in-flight Direct TV is one of the reasons they are number one on the survey. If you have to be delayed, having live satellite is a huge bonus. Plus it mitigates the annoyance of being delayed.

So here’s my plea to number two ranked Southwest, I want my Direct TV.