A new poll gauging 3,400 frequent fliers' assessments of which airlines have the rudest flight attendants yields some surprising — and not so surprising — results.
In the latter category, more than a quarter ranked all-services-are-optional carrier Spirit as having the nastiest attendants aloft.
More surprising: Air Canada came in second, with 14% of the rude vote. (Aren't Canadians supposed to be nice?)
For the most part, the results of the Airfarewatchdog survey are fairly predictable. Southwest, which in my experience is the only airline whose attendants can still be described as "perky," got a scant 1% of the rude vote. Bare-bones budget carrier Spirit leads the rudeness pack. (The last time I flew Spirit, I had "a discussion" with a flight attendant about having to pay for water. Is that even legal when you're captive on a plane?)
Airfarewatchdog founder and president George Hobica voiced surprised at seeing Virgin America near the top of the rudeness poll, "although in all my years of traveling, I'd never had a problem with a flight attendant until I flew first class on Virgin America and encountered the rudest, most inattentive flight attendant I can ever remember. So maybe there's something going on there," he says.
The full survey ranking follows. Respondents could pick one from a list of 14 airlines.
• Spirit — 26%
• Air Canada — 14%
• Frontier — 11%
• Virgin America — 9%
• Allegiant — 8%
• United — 7%
• US Airways — 7%
• American — 5%
• AirTran — 3%
• Delta — 2%
• Hawaiian — 3%
• JetBlue — 3%
• Alaska — 1%
• Southwest — 1%
*Results have been weighted by number of passengers flown between January and October 2013 to account for the fact that larger airlines will naturally have a bigger response.
Here's your chance to sound off. On what airline have you encountered the rudest flight attendants?