April 20, 2015 09:44 ET

How Low Can They Go? New Study Shows the Airlines Are Getting Worse

An Academic Survey, Now in Its 25th year, Shows Little Upside to the Downward Trajectory in the Airline Industry

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwired - Apr 20, 2015) - No, it's not just you. The airline industry really is getting worse. That's according to the latest Airline Quality Rating survey that has been studying airline behavior and performance for the last quarter century. Overall, the survey shows the airline industry collectively declined in the study's four core categories: on-time performance, involuntary denied boardings, mishandled baggage and customer complaints.

The study is detailed in the latest issue of's Travel-Intel, which lists what airlines are the ones you can trust and what airline companies may be the ones to avoid. Not surprisingly, Virgin America came out with flying colors in an otherwise dismal scoring report.

Similarly, Travel-Intel lists the best countries in Europe to visit for those who want to get the best value from the current dollar-to-Euro rates. Looking at countries in the Eurozone, Travel-Intel ranks destinations by the dollar amounts the average traveler would spend, by the prices of flights to these destinations from U.S. gateways, and by the price of a hotel night against a night in a vacation rental in these destinations. The data was compiled through Hipmunk bookings between Jan. 1 and April 4, 2015 for travel dates from June 1 - August 31, 2015.

Not to be left out of the listings reviews, Travel-Intel looks at beaches. The best U.S. beaches for families this summer is an article that lists the ten top spots for family fun in the sun. Finding the right beach without the crowds, the noise and the hassles can be a big time savings for parents who want to get it right before they hit the sand. On the list? Virginia Beach in Virginia, Rehoboth Beach in Delaware, Ogunquit Beach in Maine and Kings Beach in Lake Tahoe.

Asking the question: what does it take to be the best hotel in the world? Travel-Intel answers it with an in-depth look at Gili Lankanfushi in the Maldives. The luxury resort property, a member of the Kurtz-Ahlers collection of exclusive hotels, resorts, and destination specialists, was recently named Best Hotel in the World 2015 by TripAdvisor's Travelers' Choice survey. Find out how a 45-villa luxury resort on its own island in the middle of the Indian Ocean managed this feat.

Finally, Travel-Intel puts river cruising in focus and addresses several misconceptions and myths about what river cruising is and who should consider traveling in slow luxury along the world's rivers. In a surprise move this month, Adventures by Disney announced its plans to join the river cruising tour explosion in Europe and make this mode of travel that much more conducive for families.

Travel-Intel is a publication that goes out weekly to more than 103,000 sellers of travel. It is also posted online at The publication reports from travel conferences and expos, as well as popular hotels, exotic resorts, cruise ships and ports, and destinations near and far with stories that feature the latest Intel on travel. Current features and archives can be viewed at

"Traveling is one of the few constants we know of that can still deliver the key components of happiness," said Lark Gould, content director for Travel-Intel and "There is always something new to discover, always a new place that can work its magic, always a new memory you can make and lesson to learn. And these are the good things that go into making us whole. At Travel-Intel we try to keep information current and flowing so readers, be they travel agents or travelers, can make the best decisions in this very important endeavor."

As a veteran travel journalist who has been covering the travel industry for more than 20 years, Gould puts her incisive perspective into the weekly publication, with features and news updates, and also "packages" issues that detail great travel deals to be found at hotels and resort locations worldwide. Travel-Intel can be viewed as a stand-alone site on Gould publishes travel columns and stories in Larkslist, Barclay's Travel Community, the Washington Times, and Business Traveler USA.

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