Let’s face it: online reviews have been making travel easier for quite some time now.
And while OTAs are still dwarfed by brick and mortar travel agents, many travellers are finding it easier to get all their research done online before booking.
That’s why it’s crucial for agents to stay on top of the trends emerging from these review sites.
Which is why we bloody love TripAdvisor’s Travellers’ Choice Awards (TCA).
Yesterday, the travel planning site announced the winners of TCA for airlines, identifying travellers’ favourite carriers around the globe.
It should come as no surprise, but Qantas has topped the list for best Australian airline, gaining the most favour amongst TripAdvisor’s reviews and ratings submitted worldwide over the past 12 months!
Air New Zealand has wowed the South Pacific, coming in at number one for the region as a whole.
And the airline that was named number one worldwide is…
Trip advisor’s senior vice president and GM for flights, Bryan Saltzburg said the travel planning site was thrilled to shine a spotlight on the carriers around the world that provide the best flying experiences.
“As the airline industry introduces new fare products and a widening array of in-flight offerings, consumers continue to seek out the carriers that deliver value and a quality experience,” he said.
“The Travellers’ Choice awards for airlines recognise the carriers that exceed passenger expectations and receive top marks from travellers.”
Here’s the top ten airlines according to TripAdvisor users:
1. Singapore Airlines, Singapore
According to a TripAdvisor reviewer: “I flew from Sydney to Singapore in business class. The food was the best I have had in the last ten years. Service was great and the staff actually wanted to be there. One of the best, if not the best airline.”
2. Air New Zealand, New Zealand
According to a TripAdvisor reviewer: “The flight attendants are friendly, courteous, professional, and dedicated to customer service. The dinner was excellent, even in Economy class, and there was complimentary NZ red and white wine. Even the safety videos are entertaining. I wouldn’t fly any other airline between the U.S. and New Zealand.”
3. Emirates, United Arab Emirates
According to a TripAdvisor reviewer: “This airline is the essence of style, class and comfort. Everything I had expected was surpassed. From their presentation, to their service, which is professional, but does not override their personable approach to travellers. The Airbus is huge, but the atmosphere within is comfortable, seats are wider, windows are bigger.”
4. Japan Airlines, Japan
According to a TripAdvisor reviewer: “This airline carrier is exquisite and features great on board meal service, drink service, and the entertainment is great. They provide excellent service with exceptional leg room. This airline is truly above most others and comes with outstanding crew members.”
5. EVA Air, Taiwan
According to a TripAdvisor reviewer: “One of the things that separates EVA out from other airlines is in the little things. I was blown away by the novelty of the “Character” flight we took. Everything from the pillows to the meals – it was Hello Kitty cuteness overload. Kids’ meals are excellent. These small personal touches made our entire flight experience so much nicer!”
6. Southwest Airlines, United States
According to a TripAdvisor reviewer: “We choose to fly Southwest whenever we can. Their flights are on time and the service is friendly and efficient. We don’t mind not having assigned seats. Bags fly free, and we always check ours. Frequent Flier miles are easy to accumulate with their membership program.”
7. Jet2.com, United Kingdom
According to a TripAdvisor reviewer: “We have just come back from Portugal and all I can say is what a fab service from jet 2. From start to finish, they made my holiday less stressful. I have never been with them before and can certainly say they’re better than most other companies I have been with.”
8. Qatar Airways, Qatar
According to a TripAdvisor reviewer: “I’ve travelled a lot in my life and Qatar is one of my favourite airlines to travel with. The bar in a380 (business class) is the best. The service regardless of class is fab. The treatment of frequent fliers is great… food very tasty for economy … and very big portions… Entertainment is top notch. They are one of my favourite airlines for eco travel.”
9. Azul, Brazil
According to a TripAdvisor reviewer: “Azul is a lovely airline, employing a fleet of Embraer regional jets offering 2 + 2 seating. Service is efficient and you always get a package of “aviõezinhos” (airplane shaped gummy bears) to chew on the short domestic hops.”
10. Korean Air, South Korea
According to a TripAdvisor reviewer: “We travelled from Chicago to Hong Kong with our toddler, and could not have been more pleased with the experience. Basic economy on KA is basically economy plus on other (especially US-based) airlines. The flight staff actually made me like the experience, rather than detract from it. I’ll be flying KA whenever possible in the future.”
To view the full results of the TripAdvisor Travellers Choice Awards, go here.