Passengers who are vacillating about flying again might want to look at a new list of the world’s best airlines. The airline safety website AirlineRatings.com published its list of “Top Airlines in the World,” which generally ranks carriers by security, in-flight service, passenger comfort, and flight routes.
In any case, this year, new judging criteria are shaking up the rankings. For the first time, airlines are being decided to a limited extent by how they reacted to the Covid-19 global pandemic.
“Covid impacted the ratings in two ways,” said AirlineRatings.com Editor-in-Chief Geoffrey Thomas. “Airlines had to be Covid-compliant to our standards to be considered, and we deleted profitability as a criterion this year.”
Also, the winner is…
Qatar Airways took the No. 1 spot this year, named “Airline of the Year” by the website.
The Doha-based carrier was awarded the top prize because of its cabin innovation, in-flight service, and “dedication and commitment to continue to operate throughout the Covid pandemic,” as indicated by the site’s declaration on July 20.
Qatar Airways additionally presented industry firsts, AirlineRatings.com said, for example, being the first to finish the International Air Transport Association’s safety audit and among the first to preliminary its Covid Safe Travel Pass.
Qatar Airways additionally has one of the world’s youngest fleets, the declaration said.
The rest of the list
Here’s the full list, following by every airline’s position last year:
- Qatar Airways (9)
- Air New Zealand (1)
- Singapore Airlines (2)
- Qantas (4)
- Emirates (6)
- Cathay Pacific (5)
- Virgin Atlantic (7)
- United Airlines (N/A)
- EVA Air (8)
- British Airways (17)
- Lufthansa (11)
- ANA, or All Nippon Airways (3)
- Finnair (12)
- Japan Airlines (13)
- KLM (14)
- Hawaiian Airlines (16)
- Alaska Airlines (18)
- Virgin Australia (10)
- Delta Air Lines (19)
- Etihad Airways (20)
Most airlines kept a similar position as they did in the 2020 list. Still, Qatar Airways jumped eight spots to secure the top spot, a position typically dominated via Air New Zealand.
“Air New Zealand has been our ‘Airline of the Year’ in six of the last eight years because of its outstanding innovation and cabin service,” Thomas said.
British Airways jumped seven spots in the rankings to No. 10, while United jumped to No. 8, after not making the 2020 list at all.
Just airlines with seven safety stars are considered for the annual list. That rating depends on crash history, pilot-related incidents, government reviews — and presently Covid protocols, for example, social distancing, aircraft cleaning, and masked cabin crew.
Less than 150 of the 350-a few carriers assessed via AirlineRatings.com have seven stars. Eight carriers have only one star, as indicated by the website.
The organization said rankings, which are decided by the website’s editors, additionally consider airline service, staff engagement, and passenger feedback.
Airline Excellence Awards
Individual airlines are additionally singled out for “Airline Excellence Awards” for superior service and products. The current year’s awards went to:
Best first class: Singapore Airlines
Best business class: Qatar Airways
Best premium economy class: Air New Zealand
Best economy class: Air New Zealand
Best low-cost airline in Asia-Pacific: Jetstar
Best low-cost airline in Europe: EasyJet
Best low-cost airline in the Americas: Southwest
Best ultra-low-cost airline: Vietjet Air
Best regional airline: Qantas
Best cabin crew: Virgin Australia
Best lounges: Qantas
In-flight catering award: Qatar
In-flight entertainment award: Emirates
Independently, AirlineRatings.com issues an annual “Top Twenty Safest Airlines” list that breaks down crash records and safety compliance. One year from now, it also will factor in Covid compliance measures by the carriers, said Thomas.
That list is expected in January 2022.