A couple of airlines that are known for delivering lousy customer service might appeal to bargain conscious flyers right now.

Half of all seats flown in the United States are on United Airlines and American Airlines. Both are troubled by staffing problems, and the reliability of American has really fallen off a cliff.

It's not that the unions are trying to hurt the flying public. But between management and the unions, nobody is thinking about us.

Senator Marco Rubio, one of the rising stars of the GOP, has been on a Twitter tirade against American.

"Every American flight I have been on this week has been at least two hours late or cancelled. This one already one hour delayed," he wrote in a tweet. Or this one: "American Air says maintenance problem. Yet suddenly group of new passengers boarding. Holding plane to get connectors on from delayed flight?"

Meanwhile, United just got the most horrendous report about customer complaints. According to new federal transportation data, they were the most complained about airline every single month of 2012.

United logged 995 complaints in July, while the next closest airline, American, logged 193 complaints.  Like American, United has pilots and other staffers with gripes and we passengers suffer in the midst of this.

If you like to save money, I think of a ticket on American or United like an air travel junk bond, where you buy the debt of a city or company with a promised high rate of return because you don't know if you'll get paid back.

Right now buying on United or American could score a great deal, but the problem is the hassle factor you might have while flying!

Image of Clark Howard About the author: Clark Howard

Clark Howard is a consumer expert whose goal is to help you keep more of the money you make. His national radio show and website show you ways to save more, spend less and avoid getting ripped off. View More Articles

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