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Report: Flight cancellation, mishandled baggage down in 2016

In 2016, the reporting carriers canceled 1.17 percent of their scheduled domestic flights, an improvement over the 1.5 percent cancellation rate in 2015 and the lowest in the 22 years with comparable

In 2016, the reporting carriers canceled 1.17 percent of their scheduled domestic flights, an improvement over the 1.5 percent cancellation rate in 2015 and the lowest in the 22 years with comparable numbers, according to the Air Travel Consumer Report (ATCR) released today. The previous low was 1.24 percent in 2002.

The reporting carriers canceled 1.6 percent of their scheduled domestic flights in December 2016, an improvement over the 1.7 percent cancellation rate posted in December 2015, but up from the 0.3 percent rate in November 2016.


In 2016, the carriers posted a mishandled baggage rate of 2.70 per 1,000 passengers, down from 2015’s rate of 3.13 and the lowest annual rate since DOT started collecting mishandled baggage report data in September 1987. The previous low was 3.09 in 2012. The U.S. carriers reporting mishandled baggage data posted a mishandled baggage rate of 3.58 reports per 1,000 passengers in December, down from December 2015’s rate of 3.97, but up from November 2016’s rate of 2.02.

The carriers posted a bumping rate of 0.62 per 10,000 passengers in 2016, an improvement over the 0.73 rate posted in 2015 and the lowest annual rate based on historical data dating back to 1995. The previous low was 0.72 in 2002. These carriers posted a bumping rate of 0.54 per 10,000 passengers for the quarter, down from the 0.69 rate for the fourth quarter of 2015.

The consumer report also includes data on on-time performance, tarmac delays, chronically delayed flights, and the causes of flight delays filed with the Department’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) by the reporting carriers. In addition, the consumer report contains a tally of aviation service complaints filed with DOT’s Aviation Consumer Protection Division by consumers regarding a range of issues such as flight problems, baggage, reservation and ticketing, refunds, customer service, disability, and discrimination. The report also includes information about the total number of animals that died, were injured, or were lost during air transport in December 2016 and calendar year 2016, as filed by the air carriers with the Aviation Consumer Protection Division. In addition, the report introduces data about the total number of animals transported by airlines during the calendar year.