Flight cancellations, mishandled bags fall to record lows

Flight cancellations, mishandled bags fall to record lows

The number of cancelled flights, mishandled bags and bumped passengers fell to historic lows last year, the Department of Transportation (DOT) announced Tuesday.

Air carriers canceled just 1.17 percent of their scheduled domestic flights in 2016, which is slightly better than the 1.5 percent cancellation rate in 2015 and the lowest rate in 22 years. The previous low was 1.24 percent in 2002.

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When it comes to baggage problems, airlines reported mishandling 2.70 bags per 1,000 passengers, which is the lowest annual rate since DOT started collecting such data in 1987. The previous low, in 2012, was 3.09 mishandled bags per 1,000 travelers.

Air carriers are also bumping passengers from flights at record lows. Companies bumped 0.62 customers per every 10,000 passengers, which is the lowest annual rate based on historical data collected since 1995.

Meanwhile, customers also logged fewer complaints last year. The agency received a total of 17,904 complaints in 2016, which is down 11.3 percent from the previous year.