Photo Credit: Odd ANDERSEN
World's Best Airlines 2021: Qatar Airways Number One, American Airlines Misses List
Qatar Airways topped the list for the world’s best airlines in 2021, out of a list of 20 global airline companies by Airlines Ratings.
As CNN reported, the Australia-based aviation safety and product rating agency compiles its Airline Excellence Awards based on criteria including age of fleet, passenger reviews and product offerings. This year, the team of global editors threw airlines’ Covid-19 responses into the mix too.
The announcement comes after a period in which the aviation industry faced its worst moment ever over the past two years due to Covid-19 pandemic.
Qatar Airways ranked first as world’s best airline company, beating out previous winner Air New Zealand, which has topped the list six times over the past several years, and this year came in at number two.
For Geoffrey Thomas, editor-in-chief of Airline Ratings, Qatar Airways’ response to the pandemic that sealed the deal.
“Qatar Airways has always figured highly in our rankings, winning various awards such as Best Business Class, but it was the airline’s commitment to keeping its route network largely open that attracted the judges’ praise— and votes,” Thomas told CNN.
For the first time, AirlineRatings.com decided to announce its world’s best airlines ranking in July. Usually, the rating company announces its top airlines in November. According to Thomas, this decision was made due to the pandemic, which forced the aviation safety and product rating agency to switch things up.
“We pushed the 2021 announcement into the 2021-year due to the chaos of Covid, and we wanted to see how the industry would handle the pandemic over a longer period of time before making selections.”
Joining Qatar Airways and Air New Zealand in this year’s top five is Singapore Airlines at number three. Singapore Airlines previously won the best airline back in 2019.
Here is the full list of 20:
1. Qatar Airways 2. Air New Zealand 3. Singapore Airlines 4. Qantas 5. Emirates 6. Cathay Pacific 7. Virgin Atlantic 8. United Airlines 9. EVA Air 10. British Airways 11. Lufthansa 12. ANA1 3. Finnair 14. Japan Air Lines 15. KLM1 6. Hawaiian Airlines 17. Alaska Airlines 18. Virgin Australia 19. Delta Air Lines 20. Etihad Airways.
Meanwhile, budget carrier EasyJet won the best low-cost airline award for Europe, while Jetstar won in Asia/Pacific and Southwest won in the Americas.