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Airline and hotel apps receive negative user reviews

Skift take

Airline, hotel and car rental apps are rated by users to be far below the quality of travel booking apps. That they follow travel booking apps is not a huge surprise, but the size of the ground they would have to gain to catch up is quite daunting.

Dennis Schaal, Skift

Airlines, mobile hotel and car rental apps get the worst ratings from travelers and the gap between them and the most popular travel booking apps is huge.

This is one of the conclusions that can be drawn from ARC 360’s compilation of travel app user reviews in iTunes and Google Play.

The least popular travel apps among 31 travel brands that had both iOS and Android apps and a minimum of 10,000 ratings and reviews for each platform were those of Southwest Airlines (a rating of 25 out of 100), American Airlines (31), JetBlue (33), Delta (39), United (39) and Hertz (16).

The ARC 360 State of the US Travel App Economy report concluded that they stood out “as app quality laggards.” , although Hilton and Frontier did not have enough user reviews to be included.

ARC 360 didn’t make any company-specific recommendations for improvement, but said laggards should improve the way they track crashes and bugs, “and consider engaging with users earlier with future releases through a beta management program.

It’s not a huge surprise that more tech-driven travel booking apps scored higher than apps from airlines, hotels, car rentals, and cruise lines.

The top-rated apps on the iOS and Android platforms taken together were Booking.com (85), TripAdvisor (78), Kayak (77), TripIt (73) and Hotels.com (67).

The study did not take into account user ratings for sharing economy apps like Lyft, Uber, and Airbnb simply because ARC 360 plans to do a separate report on sharing economy apps.

But ARC 360 collected the numbers for Skift and the ratings were surprisingly low given the buzz surrounding mobile-oriented ridesharing apps and Airbnb.

Lyft’s rating was 67 and Uber’s was 65 on both platforms, putting Lyft on par with Hotels.com, the 5th travel booking app, and Uber’s rating was a slightly lower at 65. Lyft and Uber’s iOS apps, however, were rated higher than their respective Android apps.

And on the non-traditional accommodation front, Airbnb scored a 65 and HomeAway was nowhere near the pace at 55.

Applause travel Mobile App Quality Index - Vacation Rental Score