2017 Skytrax Rankings Released: A Win for Qatar Airways

Skytrax Airline Of The Year 2017

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Yesterday, Skytrax released its 2017 World Airline Awards, and Qatar Airways took home the big prize as the world’s best airline. This is the fourth time since 2011 that Qatar Airways has been ranked number 1.

This award comes on the heels of a rough few weeks for Qatar Airways, which is dealing with the fallout from a tense diplomatic situation between Qatar and 7 other Arab nations. These nations have disallowed Qatar Airways access to their air space, which has forced a number of changes for the airline.

qatar business class
The world’s best business class product from Qatar Airways. Image courtesy of dailymail.co.uk.

Qatar Airways also won the award for the best business class product and the best first class lounge. The announcement of these awards is just the kind of positive publicity they need right now as they navigate a developing political landscape.

The airline doesn’t seem to be taking this award for granted, though. Qatar Airways is days away from launching its new business class product, the QSuite. They’ve taken business class to the next level with their latest offering, which is bound to compete for the win again next year.

Hot Tip: Read more about QSuites in our review: Qatar Airlines Boeing 777 QSuites business class review.

Overall, the top 10 airlines list was dominated by 6 carriers from Asia and 3 from the Middle East:

2017 Skytrax Top 10 Airlines
Qatar AirwaysEVA Air
Singapore AirlinesLufthansa
ANA All Nippon AirwaysEtihad Airways
EmiratesHainan Airlines
Cathay PacificGaruda Indonesia

Several other airlines also have reason to be happy with their Skytrax wins this year.

Etihad Airways walked away with awards for the best first class product overall as well as the best first class seat and the best onboard first class catering. It’s no doubt that Etihad’s win stems from The Apartments, their first class product on the Airbus A380. You can read here about booking this product using points.

Turkish Airlines took home several awards for their business class efforts, including the best business class lounge, best business class lounge dining, and best business class onboard catering.

Singapore Airlines Business Class 777 - Big Seats
You can enjoy a business class seat that’s wider than most first class seats with Singapore Airlines.

Singapore Airlines won the award for best business class seat. Not surprising when you consider that their business class seat is wider than most first class seats! Singapore Airlines has some of the best overall first class and business class products in the world, ranking fifth and third respectively.

Unsurprisingly, none of the “Big 3” U.S. carriers (American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, and United Airlines) won any awards. Even in the race for best airline in North America, they all fell short to Air Canada who took home the win. These U.S. carriers continue to struggle to keep up with international carriers from Asia, the Middle East, and even Europe.

Garuda Indonesia First Class Champagne
The Garuda Indonesia crew can get your flight started right with a nice glass of champagne and a snack. Image courtesy of straighttothepoints.co.

Finally, Garuda Indonesia received the award for best airline cabin crew. If there is one airline that takes pride in its in-flight service and 5-star Skytrax ranking, it’s Garuda Indonesia. They even have a plaque on the wall of each cabin to show their ranking.

The announcement of the Skytrax rankings is always a fun day for travelers. The awards are mostly a popularity contest since they’re based on millions of votes, but they still give a nice snapshot into what travelers are thinking.

We look forward to seeing what airlines will do to capture next year’s title as the best airline in the world, but for now Qatar Airways is flying high!

Spencer Howard

About Spencer Howard

Always a fan of flying, it was only natural that Spencer was drawn to finding a way to improve the travel experience. Like many, he started this journey searching for cheap flights to take him around the world. This was fun for a while, but Spencer was intrigued by the idea of flying in business and first class! Throwing himself into what became an extensive research project, Spencer spent 3-4 hours per night learning everything he could about frequent flyer miles over the course of several months (he thinks this is normal).

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