It’s annual Airshow time. The Farnborough Airshow was once again the place to be for airline representatives to collect their awards in a range of categories from a number of rating agencies. As expected, those airlines that have been consistently receiving awards continue to figure heavily in the lists, with changes in order, losses or gains in position receiving the most comments. Each year new additions also make the list. This year, Porter Airlines, a small Canadian airline has found its place in the Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards survey.
Skytrax is airline focussed and while many of the same names appear in both lists, the order may vary.
Travel + Leisure Awards
Travel + Leisure’s annual Award lists collate the results of a wide variety of travel products, covering transportation, accommodation and all types of holiday options in their World’s Best Awards survey.
The Airlines awards are customer rated as an ‘overall package’ based on the cabin comfort, in-flight service, customer service, as well overall value. They do look at both International (top 10) and Domestic (top 5) though the Domestic Airlines awarded are only from US, with Virgin America taking out that spot.
These awards do also give a gong to the best International Airports, half of which are in Asian Countries with Singapore’s Changi Airport taking top spot. Three are in Europe, one in the Middle East and there is also an Australian representative – Adelaide Airport in South Australia.
Travel + Leisure’s respondents named Singapore Airlines as top International Airline, followed by the three Middle Eastern big guns – Emirates, Qatar Airways and Etihad Airways. Three other Asian airlines make the cut – Cathay Pacific, Eva Air and Korean Air. Air New Zealand takes seventh placing and the list is rounded out by newcomer, Canada’s Porter Airlines, which apparently is popular with travellers because it has an airport lounge open to all and serves in-flight food and drinks, with the drinks served in glass, not plastic.
Skytrax sticks exclusively to Airline and Airline related ratings, again based on customer feedback. Many of the airlines appearing at the top achieve these positions consistently and they work hard to ensure they stay there.
However, one of the often overlooked categories is that for ‘Most Improved Airline’, won in the past few years by Air France, Garuda Indonesia, China Southern Airlines and Hong Kong Airlines. In 2016, Thai Airways takes the top spot, followed by Aer Lingus and Vietnam Airlines. As this award usually follows a concerted effort by the airlines to ‘get it right’, it is not a bad list to look through when choosing an airline.
The Skytrax Best Airlines list has only six names in common with the Travel+Leisure list, with Singapore Airlines pushed to third place by Emirates and Qatar Airways. The third Middle Eastern Airline, Etihad Airways comes in, in sixth spot.
Cathay Pacific and EVA Air make both lists and they are joined by one other Asian representative, Japan’s ANA All Nippon Airways, Europe is represented by Turkish Airlines and Lufthansa, with Australia’s Qantas Airways in the list at number 9.
Low Cost Airlines are very proud of the awards their receive as Skytrax has a number of categories just for Low cost carriers.
Overall winner in the World’s Best Low Cost Airline Category AirAsia, was joined by it’s Long-Haul affiliate in second place in the Asian group.
Other regional winners include Jetstar Airways as Best Low Cost Airline in Australia & Pacific, IndiGo in India & Central Asia, Shanghai’s Spring Airlines in China and Norwegian in Europe. Most are multi-time winners in their category.
Virgin America, voted top Domestic US airline in Travel + Leisure’s survey, was named Best Low Cost Airline in North America.
Star Alliance was named the World’s Best Airline Alliance, edging out oneworld Alliance and SkyTeam Alliance to take top spot. Singapore Airlines, EvaAir and Turkish Airlines and well as ANA are all members of this Alliance.