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Airlineratings.com has released its annual list of the best airlines of the year. In 2023, Air New Zealand took the top spot for the seventh time since 2013.
The Airline Excellence Awards are judged on 12 key criteria including: fleet age, passenger reviews, profitability, investment rating, product offerings, and staff relations. Qatar Airways had won the past two years, but lost to Air New Zealand in 2023. Other runners-up include Etihad Airways, Korean Air, and Singapore Airlines. They have all won before.
Per Airlineratings.com, the Top 25 premium airlines are Air New Zealand, Qatar Airways, Etihad Airways, Korean Air, Singapore Airlines, Qantas, Virgin Australia/Virgin Atlantic, EVA Air, Cathay Pacific Airways, Emirates, Lufthansa/Swiss, SAS, TAP Portugal, All Nippon Airways, Delta Air Lines, Air Canada, British Airways, JetBlue, JAL, Vietnam Airlines, Turkish Airlines, Hawaiian, KLM, Alaska Airlines, and United Airlines.
Here are the other winners by category:
Best First Class: Singapore Airlines
Best Business Class: Qatar Airways
Best Premium Economy: Emirates
Best Economy Class: Air New Zealand
Best Catering: Qatar Airways
Best Cabin Crew: Virgin Australia/Virgin Atlantic
Best-In-Flight Entertainment: Emirates
Best Lounges: Qantas
Best Regional Airline: Air Baltic
Excellence in Long Haul Travel (Middle East): Qatar Airways
Excellence in Long Haul Travel (North Asia): Korean Air
Excellence in Long Haul Travel (Northern Europe): Lufthansa
Excellence in Long Haul Travel (North America): Delta Air Lines
Excellence in Long Haul Travel (South America): LATAM
Excellence in Long Haul Travel (Southern Europe): Turkish Airlines
Excellence in Long Haul Travel (South-East Asia): Singapore Airlines
Excellence in Long Haul Travel (Australia/Pacific): Air New Zealand
Excellence in Long Haul Travel (African Airline): Air Mauritius
Best Low-Cost Airlines (Americas): Southwest
Best Low-Cost Airlines (Middle East): Fly Dubai
Best Low-Cost Airlines (Asia): AirAsia
Best Low-Cost Airlines (Australia/Pacific): Jetstar
Best Low-Cost Airlines (Europe): Ryanair
It’s interesting to note that the only US carriers to make the list are Delta Air Lines and Southwest. Of the airline alliances, Star Alliance had the most members winning awards.
Anthony’s Take: These choices are not surprises. Middle Eastern airlines have invested heavily in premium experiences and the top winner, Air New Zealand, continues to innovate with its Skycouch and sleeping pods.
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