World's best airline named at Airline Excellence Awards for 2019

Singapore Airlines has been named as the world's best airline for the second time in 2018, taking out the Airline of the Year 2019 award at the Airline Excellence Awards.

The awards, judged by seven editors from, combines safety ratings with factors such as fleet age, passenger reviews, profitability, investment, products and staff relations.

AirlineRatings editor-in-chief Geoffrey Thomas said: "In our objective analysis Singapore Airlines came out No. 1 in many of our audit criteria, which is a great performance.

"For years Singapore Airlines has been the gold standard and now it is back to its best, leading in passenger innovations and new state-of-the-art aircraft models."

Singapore Airlines returned to the record books last month by restarting the world's longest flight route – Singapore to New York City non-stop. The airline flies a new Airbus A350-900ULR (for "ultra long range") on the 19-hour, 16,700-kilometre haul. Notably, the plane contains no economy class seats, with only business class and premium economy on offer.

See also: Hour by hour: My epic trip on board the world's longest flight

In the past 12 months the airline also rolled out new seats for its A380 superjumbos, including its first double-beds in business class.

Traveller national editor Anthony Dennis reviewed the new business class this year and was impressed, giving it a perfect score of five out of five.

"Singapore Airlines' new seat doesn't disappoint and is so full of features it's hard to imagine how it might be reasonably improved," he wrote.


"On this overnight flight I enjoyed one of the best-ever sleeps on a plane in this seat in its flat-bed mode, enhanced by padded bed sheets, blankets and a large pillow."

See: Airline review: Singapore Airlines A380 business class

Singapore Airlines was also named the world's best in July at the World Airline Awards run by aviation research firm Skytrax. The awards are based on surveys of more than 20 million travellers, who rated more than 335 airlines between August 2017 and May 2018.

Other winners at the Airline Excellence Awards included Korean Air for best economy class, Air New Zealand for best premium economy, Qatar Airways for best business class and Singapore Airlines for best first class. Qantas won best domestic airline service and best lounges, while Virgin Australia won for best cabin crew.

Top 10 airlines – Airline Excellence Awards

Click on the links for Traveller's reviews of the airlines

  1. Singapore Airlines (Review: A380 economy class)
  2. Air New Zealand (Review Dreamliner premium economy)
  3. Qantas (Review:787 Dreamliner business class)
  4. Qatar Airways (Review: A380 business class)
  5. Virgin Australia (Review: 777 premium economy)
  6. Emirates (Review: A380 economy class)
  7. All Nippon Airways (Review: ANA Dreamliner economy class)
  8. EVA Air
  9. Cathay Pacific Airways (Review: A350 economy class)
  10. Japan Airlines (Review: 777 premium economy)

World's best airlines for 2018 – Skytrax World Airline Awards

  1. Singapore Airlines
  2. Qatar Airways
  3. ANA All Nippon Airways
  4. Emirates
  5. EVA Air
  6. Cathay Pacific Airways
  7. Lufthansa
  8. Hainan Airlines
  9. Garuda Indonesia
  10. Thai Airways

See also: World's safest - the airlines that have never had a crash

See also: The reason why airlines make so much money from premium economy