Most complained about UK airlines ranked - including Ryanair, Wizz Air and British Airways

The most common passenger complaints concern cancellations, delays, denied boarding and downgrades.

Airline passengers made almost 3,000 complaints to UK industry adjudicators in the first three months of the year – but the rate of complaints per passenger is several times higher for some airlines than for others.

Data from the UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) shows passengers made 2,985 complaints to it or other statutory complaint handlers between January and March, the latest period with available data.

The figures refer to complaints escalated to a third party regulator by passengers dissatisfied with the way an airline has handled it initially.

Some airlines are signed up to ‘Alternative Dispute Resolution’ (ADR) bodies, which handle such complaints. Decisions by ADRs on complaint outcomes and compensation are binding.

If an airline is not signed up to an ADR, passengers can complain to the CAA’s in-house  Passenger Advice and Complaints Team (PACT) – although its decisions are not binding.

Both types are included in the data.

The vast majority of complaints (2,576) concerned delays, cancellations, downgrades and denied boardings. These are known as regulation 261 complaints.

The top 20 worst airlines ranked by the number of complaints per million passengers departing the UK are listed below.

Three airlines that handled fewer than 10,000 passengers and which had one complaint apiece (Transavia, Royal Brunei Airlines and Malaysian Airlines) have been excluded.

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