Wizz Air named worst short-haul airline by UK passengers for 2023 - full list including Ryanair and Jet2
Which? told customers to avoid the airlines offering poor experience
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The airline was given just one out of five stars for its boarding experience, cabin environment and seat comfort by passengers surveyed by consumer group Which?.
The Hungarian budget airline’s seat pitch – the difference between two rows in standard economy – is 28 inches, some two inches smaller than rival Ryanair.
No more than two stars were awarded in any of the remaining categories, including value for money and cleanliness.
Wizz Air operates short-haul flights from eight UK airports including Birmingham, Edinburgh, Gatwick and Luton.
The airline’s overall customer score of 48% put it at the bottom of the ranking, below Ryanair with a score of 52%, Eurowings with 53% and British Airways with 56%.
Jet2.com had the highest score with 80% customer satisfaction in the Which? survey, ahead of Turkish Airlines which scored 78%.
The consumer watchdog surveyed 8,046 UK adults in October 2022 about their experiences of flying in the previous two years and warned customers to avoid the airlines offering poor experiences.
Customer scores for airlines were calculated from a combination of travellers’ overall satisfaction and their likelihood to recommend the airline to others.
Which? Travel editor Rory Boland said: “Travellers have had a torrid time in recent years, with last-minute delays and cancellations an unacceptably common occurrence.
“While airlines like Jet2.com have distinguished themselves by offering flyers excellent customer care and a reliable service, too many of their competitors continually fail to measure up.
“If alternative carriers are available for your route, avoid Wizz Air, as its poor record on customer care means you’re likely to be left high and dry in the event your flight is delayed or cancelled.”
In December, the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) said it has “significant concerns” about Wizz Air’s “unacceptable” behaviour as its passengers were far more likely to make escalated complaints than those of other carriers.
The regulator also found that the airline was delaying paying money owed to passengers.
A Wizz Air spokesman said: “At Wizz Air, we do everything possible to ensure that passengers reach their destination on time and with minimal delay.
“Wizz Air operates a fleet of brand new, state-of-the-art Airbus aircraft, with an average age of 4.6 years, which offer passengers comfort, space and modern interiors.
“The A321neo features the widest single-aisle cabin configuration with 239 18-inch-wide seats. Every aircraft is cleaned after each flight and deep cleaned every night.”
A British Airways spokesman said: “We don’t feel this small survey, conducted during one of the most challenging periods in global aviation, accurately represents the views of the tens of millions of customers who’ve chosen to fly with us over the same period.
“While we don’t claim to get everything right every time, we continue to be recognised for the service we offer.
“Our customers tell us they appreciate being able to choose from a range of cabins, flying to and from central airports at convenient times of the day, plus our investment in new aircraft, new seating, wifi, new menus, the complimentary snacks and water we offer in our short-haul economy cabin, and the most generous hand baggage allowance of any UK airline.”
Ryanair and Eurowings did not provide a response.
How airlines ranked
Listed is every short-haul airline ranked from best to worst for customer satisfaction in 2023, according to Which?:
- Jet2 - 80% customer satisfaction
- Turkish Airlines - 78% customer satisfaction
- Finnair -75% customer satisfaction
- Swiss -75% customer satisfaction
- Aurigny Air Service - 74% customer satisfaction
- Norwegian - 74% customer satisfaction
- Icelandair - 71% customer satisfaction
- Aer Lingus - 67% customer satisfaction
- Air Malta - 65% customer satisfaction
- SAS Scandinavian Airlines - 65% customer satisfaction
- Aegean Airlines - 62% customer satisfaction
- Iberia - 61% customer satisfaction
- KLM - 61% customer satisfaction
- TAP Portugal - 61% customer satisfaction
- EasyJet - 59% customer satisfaction
- Tui Airways - 59% customer satisfaction
- Air France - 58% customer satisfaction
- Vueling Airlines - 58% customer satisfaction
- Lufthansa - 57% customer satisfaction
- British Airways - 56% customer satisfaction
- Eurowings - 53% customer satisfaction
- Ryanair - 52% customer satisfaction
- Wizz Air - 48% customer satisfaction