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Top 10 Airlines in Customer Satisfaction

Find out who the world's top 10 airlines in customer satisfaction are plus how to file a complaint if you have had a bad experience with an airline in this article.

Using the results from over 13 million customer interviews, Skytrax, the World Airline Survey company, proclaimed British Airways as the top world airline for 2006. So what makes an airline the best in the world?

There are many answers to this question, but above all, it seems that when an airline takes particular interest in their customers’ comfort, they receive high marks. Customers enjoy being entertained, culinary satisfaction, and comfortable seats. If their flight is delayed, they want prompt attention and information. Customers want to feel like their best interest is at the heart of the airline’s decisions. If an airline is overbooked, customers need extra-special care and remedies such as future flight vouchers to make up for the problem.

The airlines that made the Skytrax top ten list include

  1. British Airways (Britian) 
  2. Qantas Airways (Australia) 
  3. Cathay Pacific (Hong Kong) 
  4. Thai Airways (Thailand) 
  5. Emirates (Dubai) 
  6. Qatar Airways (Qatar) 
  7. Singapore Airlines (Singapore) 
  8. ANA (Japan) 
  9. Malaysia Airlines (Malaysia) 
  10. China Airlines (Taiwan)

It should be noted that Thai Airways won the Best Cabin Staff category. Absent from the airline world stage is any airline from the United States. What does this say about how their customers view United States air travel? That it is not good.

Filing A Complaint

So what if a customer has a bad experience with an airline, how do they file a complaint? The Department of Transportation has a division titled the Aviation Consumer Protection Division (ACPD). This does not cover consumer problems with security or safety as those are handled through the Transportation Security Administration and the Federal Aviation Administration. However, if a customer has a concern about their service they can go online or call the ACPD 24 hours a day at 202-366-2220 and leave their complaint.

The complaint is then put in the Department of Transportation’s computer system that monitors the aviation industry. The complaint records are then complied into a report and sent to the company in question through the monthly Air Travel Consumer Report. The complaints are also reviewed to make sure the different airlines stay in compliance with all the regulations governing federal aviation consumer protection. If a customer wants further information on consumer protection, they can contact the ACPD for their booklets and fact sheets covering air travel issues.

Final Points To Consider

A few final points to consider when viewing customer satisfaction: customers want low cost options in their travel. Consistent product and service are also key. Those airlines who hope to climb in the rankings should be aware of what they can do to up their service to their most important asset: the customer.

The World's Top 10 Airlines Sources:

  • Department of Transportation, Aviation Consumer Protection Division, “Air Travel Service Problems How complaints are handled,” [online].
  • Flight Mapping, “British Airways named airline of the year,” [online].
  • Skytrax World Airline Awards, “British Airways Wins 2006 Airline of the Year Title in World Airline Awards,” [online].
  • Standard Newspaper in Nairobi-Kenya, by Noel Wandera, “Survey ranks BA 2006 top airline,” [online newspaper]

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