Alaska Airlines and Southwest Airlines Lead Airline Industry in 2013 Temkin Experience Ratings

We recently released the 2013 Temkin Experience Ratings that ranks the customer experience of 246 companies across 19 industries based on a survey of 10,000 U.S. consumers. Alaska Airlines and Southwest Airlines tied for the top spot in the industry. US Airways and American Airlines, the recently merged companies, ended up as the two lowest rated airlines. As a matter of fact, US Airways is the lowest rated company across any industry. Together, they threaten to become a customer experience mega-monster.

Here are other highlights from the airline industry:

  • The average rating for airlines places it at number 15 out of 19 industries.
  • The average industry rating remains steady at 60% (in 2012, it was 61%, and in 2011, it was 60%).
  • The highest-ranked airlines Alaska Airlines and Southwest Airlines, both with a rating of 68%, eight points above the industry average. Alaska Airlines increased five points from 2012 while Southwest Airlines dropped five points.
  • The next airlines in the ratings, in order, are: AirTran Airways (65%), JetBlue (64%), and Delta Airlines (63%).
  • Delta Airlines improved five points from the 2012 ratings, tying it for the largest gain in the industry.
  • JetBlue has an unusually emotional profile. The airline’s emotional rating is almost eight percentage points above the industry average, but its functional and accessible ratings are less than three points above average.
  • Southwest Airlines leads in functional and accessible components and Alaska Airlines leads in the emotional rating.
  • US Airways (#246 overall, the lowest rated company) earned a rating of 45%, nine points behind the next lowest scoring American Airlines.
  • US Airways had the largest drop since 2012, seven percentage points, and earned the lowest score for all three subcomponents: functional, accessible, and emotional.
  • Here’s a link to industry results from the 2012 ratings.

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Airlines1 Airlines2

Temkin Ratings website

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I am an experience management transformist, helping organizations improve business results by engaging the hearts and minds of their customers, employees, and partners. My "job" is Head of the Qualtrics XM Institute. The Institute is still being established, but our goal is to help organizations around the world thrive by mastering Experience Management (XM). As part of this focus, I examine strategy, culture, interaction design, customer service, branding and leadership practices. And, as many people know, I love to speak about these topics in almost any forum. Prior to joining Qualtrics, I was managing partner of Temkin Group (leading CX research, advisory, and training firm), co-founder and chair of the Customer Experience Professionals Association (, and a VP at Forrester Research. I'm a fanatical student of business, so this blog provides an outlet for sharing insights from my ongoing educational journey. Check out my LinkedIn profile:

2 thoughts on “Alaska Airlines and Southwest Airlines Lead Airline Industry in 2013 Temkin Experience Ratings”

  1. Bruce – we’ve just been reaping all kinds of benefits from this latest study – thank you. Parts of it even inspired a blog post on our part by Amy Pressman our President. Check out this one on Airlines’ Addiction To Mergers: Why Customer Experience Is A Better Strategy For Acquiring Customers!

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