People often ask me what are my favourite airlines? Here is the answer, after 1300 flights on 103 airlines almost 75 times around the world.
Of the 103 different airlines I have travelled on, two of them I will never choose to fly on again (Air Asia and Ryanair) and two I regularly avoid (TigerAir and United). Others have merged or gone bust.
My top ten currently ranked favourites are:
10. Virgin Australia -in a few short years, they have transformed themselves from a budget carrier to a full service global carrier. I really enjoy their offerings. 2018 was a difficult year for the airline but staff continued to provide great service. My Score: 88% (unchanged from last year)
9. Turkish Airlines hospitality is incredible with gracious staff, stunning food and well fitted out planes. My Score: 90% (unchanged from last year)
8. Thai Airways: My favourite joke about Thaï is counting how many hot towels they will bring me in business Class during one of their flights. It seems at every moment, another refreshing towel appears! Thai service is gracious, food terrific and entertainment options solid. For some reason, I can always fall asleep on a long haul Thai flight. Their fleet is very inconsistent and their older planes need refurbishments
My Score: 91% (93% last year)
7. Qantas is the airline, I fly the most. I always feel welcome on board, enjoy good quality food and remain in love with the First lounges in Melbourne and Sydney. My biggest frustration with Qantas is that service can be inconsistent depending on crew and their mood. Some of their planes and lounges need some refurbishment to bring product up to 2018 standards. My Score: 92% (unchanged from last year)
7. Cathay Pacific have long been a favourite of mine but I have felt some slippage over the last 12-14 months. Embroiled in some ugly labour disputes, the company’s service feels like it has been fraying around the edges. My Score: 92% (98.5% last year)
5. Air New Zealand provides delightful Kiwi service with a solid on board product. My Score: 94% (98% last year)
4. Lufthansa delivers consistently excellent service. Consistency is important to me. It is one of my frustrations with Etihad who you never know what you are going to get. Anyway, Lufthansa has amazingly good food, some of the best lounges I have encountered and warm efficient customer service. My Score: 96% (unchanged)
3. Singapore Airlines have striven to be the best for so long. Always strive to make me think that flying is a pleasure. I felt they had fallen behind over the last few years. But this year, they have come back strongly with their Singapore Suites, wifi expansion and regional lie flat Business Class beds. My only criticism now is that I sometimes find their on board service a little robotic. My Score: 98% (92% last year).
2. Emirates are my second choice when flying. I admire their consistency, reliability, professionalism and amazing food across all classes. I think their Economy Class offering beats almost everybody. My Score: 99% (unchanged from last year)
1. Qatar Airways makes it through another year as my overall favourite airline although in Economy I think Emirates is giving them a run for their money. In Business Class there is no comparison, however. The Q suites, Qatar Lounges and accompanying service leave every other Business Class for dead. My Score: 100% (unchanged from last year)
So who are your favourite carriers?
- Measuring Star, Skyteam, One World – Which is the “BEST” airline alliance?
- Best Airlines in the World 2017 (my reactions and comments)
- All about Star Alliance on their 20th Anniversary
- Comparing One World Emerald and Sapphire
- Who is the best One World airline?
- My 380th Qantas flight will be on a 380 – of course!