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Skytrax (originally known as Inflight Research Services) is a United Kingdom–based consultancy which runs an airline and airport review and ranking site.[1] In 2012, the online investigations company KwikChex filed five complaints with the UK Advertising Standards Authority. The authority upheld all five complaints and Skytrax agreed to modify some promotional wording.[2][3] Questions have also been raised about Skytrax' objectivity and methodology.

ServicesEdit

Skytrax conducts research for commercial airlines, as well as taking surveys from international travelers to rate cabin staff, airports, airlines, airline lounges, in-flight entertainment, on-board catering, and several other elements of air travel.[4][5] Apart from these evaluations, Skytrax has an airline forum where passengers give potential passengers insights and opinions about an airline. The website also hosts flight reviews, flight checks, and satisfaction surveys. Skytrax holds an annual World Airline Awards[6] and World Airport Awards,[7] as well as the ranking for airlines and airports.

Doubts about objectivityEdit

Skytrax claims on its website that it has no economic ties to the airlines and airports that are presented with Skytrax awards, which it says are based on votes by passengers. In fact any person may vote, one vote per IP address.[8] Skytrax provides remunerated consulting services to airlines and airports, and there are doubts as to whether this arrangement allows Skytrax to be objective in the awards that it issues, to wit:

In 2011, Skytrax's award of a 5-star rating to Hainan Airlines subsequent to a consulting project that it completed for the airline raised doubts about the objectivity of the award.[9]

In 2012, the online investigations company KwikChex filed five complaints with the UK Advertising Standards Authority related to statements on the Skytrax web site describing the volume and reliability of their reviews as well as the official status and update frequency of their ratings. The ASA ruled that there was no evidence that Skytrax had followed the robust procedures it claimed it had in place to check all reviews were genuine. Although Skytrax argued that every review underwent a four-stage authentication process, it said it was unable to provide proof it had followed its own procedures as customer emails were deleted 24 hours after a review was submitted.[10] The authority upheld all five complaints and Skytrax agreed to modify some promotional wording.[2][3]

In 2014, Etihad stopped participating in Skytrax ratings.[11]

In 2015, news company Skift concluded that Skytrax had "wildly inflated" the number of persons participating in its annual survey.[12] Skift reported:[13]

The principal partner appears to be Skytrax’s founder Edward Plaisted, whose background in aviation, or outside of aviation, is unknown. Skift has tried on more than one occasion to get insights from the Skytrax on its methodology, metrics, and business organization with no success. Questions answered by its press representative were later claimed to be off the record, and statements given for previous stories were asked to be retracted.

Skytrax' 2019 downgrading of Turkish Airlines to a three-star carrier, subsequent to its 2018 pulling out of Skytrax, elicited much criticism and accusations of dishonesty in the awards and doubts as to whether Skytrax actually uses the methodology that it states that it uses.[14] Similar criticism arose when Skytrax awarded Lufthansa an award for a future cabin interior in 2019, subsequent to a consulting project that it had completed for the airline.[15]

AwardsEdit

Skytrax presents awards annually to airports and airlines that it considers noteworthy in their performance.

Airline of the yearEdit

Year 1st 2nd 3rd
2001[16]   Emirates   Singapore Airlines   Cathay Pacific
2002[16]   Emirates   Cathay Pacific   Singapore Airlines
2003[17]   Cathay Pacific[18]   Emirates   Singapore Airlines
2004[18]   Singapore Airlines   Emirates   Cathay Pacific
2005[19]   Cathay Pacific   Qantas   Emirates
2006[16]   British Airways   Qantas   Cathay Pacific
2007[20]   Singapore Airlines   Thai Airways   Cathay Pacific
2008[21]   Singapore Airlines   Cathay Pacific   Qantas
2009[22]   Cathay Pacific   Singapore Airlines   Asiana Airlines
2010[23]   Asiana Airlines   Singapore Airlines   Qatar Airways
2011[24]   Qatar Airways   Singapore Airlines   Asiana Airlines
2012[25]   Qatar Airways   Asiana Airlines   Singapore Airlines
2013[26]   Emirates   Qatar Airways   Singapore Airlines
2014[27]   Cathay Pacific   Qatar Airways   Singapore Airlines
2015[28]   Qatar Airways   Singapore Airlines   Cathay Pacific
2016[29]   Emirates   Qatar Airways   Singapore Airlines
2017[30]   Qatar Airways   Singapore Airlines   All Nippon Airways
2018[31]   Singapore Airlines   Qatar Airways   All Nippon Airways
2019[32]   Qatar Airways   Singapore Airlines   All Nippon Airways

Airport of the yearEdit

Year 1st 2nd 3rd
1999   Amsterdam Airport Schiphol[33] None None
2000   Singapore Changi Airport[33] None None
2001[34]   Hong Kong International Airport   Kuala Lumpur International Airport   Singapore Changi Airport
2002[35]   Hong Kong International Airport   Singapore Changi Airport   Sydney Kingsford Smith International Airport
2003[36]   Hong Kong International Airport[33]   Singapore Changi Airport   Dubai International Airport
2004[37]   Hong Kong International Airport   Singapore Changi Airport   Amsterdam Airport Schiphol
2005[38]   Hong Kong International Airport   Singapore Changi Airport   Incheon International Airport
2006[39]   Singapore Changi Airport[33]   Hong Kong International Airport   Munich Airport
2007[40]   Hong Kong International Airport   Incheon International Airport   Singapore Changi Airport
2008[41]   Hong Kong International Airport   Singapore Changi Airport   Incheon International Airport
2009[42]   Incheon International Airport   Hong Kong International Airport   Singapore Changi Airport
2010[43]   Singapore Changi Airport   Incheon International Airport   Hong Kong International Airport
2011[44]   Hong Kong International Airport   Singapore Changi Airport   Incheon International Airport
2012[45]   Incheon International Airport   Singapore Changi Airport   Hong Kong International Airport
2013[46]   Singapore Changi Airport   Incheon International Airport   Amsterdam Schiphol Airport
2014[47]   Singapore Changi Airport   Incheon International Airport   Munich Airport
2015[48]   Singapore Changi Airport   Incheon International Airport   Munich Airport
2016[49]   Singapore Changi Airport   Incheon International Airport   Munich Airport
2017[50]   Singapore Changi Airport   Tokyo International Airport   Incheon International Airport
2018[51]   Singapore Changi Airport   Incheon International Airport   Tokyo International Airport
2019[52]   Singapore Changi Airport   Tokyo International Airport   Incheon International Airport

Airline rankingsEdit

The World's 5-Star AirlinesEdit

Skytrax currently certifies only its top 10 rated airlines with 5 stars

Sources:[53][54][55][56][57][58]

Airline Alliance Period
  All Nippon Airways Star Alliance 2013–present
  Asiana Airlines Star Alliance 2007–present
  Cathay Pacific Oneworld 2001–2002, 2004, 2006–present
  EVA Air Star Alliance 2016–present
  Garuda Indonesia SkyTeam 2014–present
  Hainan Airlines none 2010–present
  Japan Airlines Oneworld 2018–present
  Lufthansa Star Alliance 2017–present
  Qatar Airways Oneworld 2006–present
  Singapore Airlines Star Alliance 2001–2002, 2004, 2006–present
Former 5-Star airlinesEdit
Airline Alliance Period
  Ansett Australia Star Alliance 2001–2002
  British Airways Oneworld 2001
  Emirates none 2001
  Etihad Airways none 2016–2019
  Kingfisher Airlines none 2008–2010
  Malaysia Airlines Oneworld 2001, 2005–2013

Airline with the Best Airport ServicesEdit

Year 1st 2nd 3rd
2013[59]   All Nippon Airways   Asiana Airlines   Korean Air
2014[59]   All Nippon Airways   EVA Air   Thai Airways
2015[59]   All Nippon Airways   EVA Air   Garuda Indonesia
2016[59]   All Nippon Airways   EVA Air   Thai Airways
2017[59]   All Nippon Airways   EVA Air   Thai Airways
2018[59]   EVA Air   All Nippon Airways   Cathay Pacific

Best Inflight EntertainmentEdit

Year 1st 2nd 3rd
2013[59]   Emirates   Singapore Airlines   Cathay Pacific
2014[59]   Emirates   Singapore Airlines   Turkish Airlines
2015[59]   Emirates   Qatar Airways   Singapore Airlines
2016[59]   Emirates   Singapore Airlines   Qatar Airways
2017[59]   Emirates   Qatar Airways   Singapore Airlines
2018[59]   Emirates   Singapore Airlines   Qatar Airways
2019[59]   Emirates   Qatar Airways   Singapore Airlines

Best Aircraft Cabin CleanlinessEdit

Year 1st 2nd 3rd
2013[59]   All Nippon Airways   Asiana Airlines   Korean Air
2014[59]   Asiana Airlines   All Nippon Airways   Singapore Airlines
2015[59]   EVA Air   Singapore Airlines   All Nippon Airways
2016[59]   Cathay Pacific   EVA Air   All Nippon Airways
2017[59]   EVA Air   All Nippon Airways   Japan Airlines
2018[59]   All Nippon Airways   EVA Air   Asiana Airlines

World's Best Regional Airlines (Short haul flight)Edit

Year 1st 2nd 3rd
2013[59]   Cathay Dragon (formerly Dragonair)   Aegean Airlines   Bangkok Airways
2014[59]   Bangkok Airways   Cathay Dragon (formerly Dragonair)   Aegean Airlines
2015[59]   Cathay Dragon (formerly Dragonair)   Bangkok Airways   Aegean Airlines
2016[59]   Bangkok Airways   Cathay Dragon (formerly Dragonair)   Hong Kong Airlines
2017[16]   Bangkok Airways   Hong Kong Airlines   Cathay Dragon (formerly Dragonair)
2018[60]   Bangkok Airways   Cathay Dragon (formerly Dragonair)   Alaska Airlines

World's Best Airline AllianceEdit

Year 1st 2nd 3rd
2013[59] Oneworld Star Alliance SkyTeam
2014[59] Oneworld Star Alliance SkyTeam
2015[59] Oneworld Star Alliance SkyTeam
2016[59] Star Alliance Oneworld SkyTeam
2017[61] Star Alliance Oneworld SkyTeam
2018[62] Star Alliance Oneworld SkyTeam

Airport rankingsEdit

World's best airport terminalsEdit

Rank (2017)[63] Airport Terminal Image
1   Munich - T2  
2   London-Heathrow - T5  
3   Singapore - T3  
4   London-Heathrow - T2  
5   Madrid - T4  
6   Tokyo-Haneda - Int'l  
7   Paris-Charles de Gaulle - T2-M  
8   Dubai-International - T3  
9   Mumbai - T2  
10   Shanghai-Hongqiao - T2  

World's 5-Star AirportsEdit

Source:[64]

World's best international airports by passenger numbersEdit

50 million+ passengersEdit

Year 1st 2nd 3rd
2013[59]   Singapore Changi Airport   Amsterdam Airport Schiphol   Hong Kong International Airport
2014[59]   Singapore Changi Airport   Hong Kong International Airport   Amsterdam Airport Schiphol
2015[59]   Singapore Changi Airport   Hong Kong International Airport   Tokyo International Airport
2016[59]   Singapore Changi Airport   Tokyo International Airport   Hong Kong International Airport

World's Best Transit AirportsEdit

Year 1st 2nd 3rd
2013[59]   Incheon International Airport   Singapore Changi Airport   Hong Kong International Airport
2014[59]   Incheon International Airport   Singapore Changi Airport   Narita International Airport
2015[59]   Incheon International Airport   Singapore Changi Airport   Hong Kong International Airport
2016[59]   Incheon International Airport   Singapore Changi Airport   Hong Kong International Airport
2017[59]   Haneda Airport   Incheon International Airport   Chūbu Centrair International Airport
2018[59]   Hong Kong International Airport   Singapore Changi Airport   Incheon International Airport

World's Cleanest AirportsEdit

Year 1st 2nd 3rd
2013[59]   Haneda International Airport   Incheon International Airport   Singapore Changi Airport
2014[59]   Haneda International Airport   Incheon International Airport   Singapore Changi Airport
2015[59]   Incheon International Airport   Haneda International Airport   Chūbu Centrair International Airport
2016[59]   Haneda International Airport   Chūbu Centrair International Airport   Incheon International Airport

World's Best Airport Baggage DeliveryEdit

Year 1st 2nd 3rd
2013[59]   Zürich Airport   Beijing Capital International Airport   Tokyo International Airport
2014[59]   Hong Kong International Airport   Incheon International Airport   Singapore Changi Airport
2015[59]   Kansai International Airport   Hong Kong International Airport   Singapore Changi Airport
2016[59]   Kansai International Airport   Tokyo International Airport   Singapore Changi Airport

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "AirlineQuality.com WHOIS, DNS, & Domain Info - DomainTools". Retrieved 10 May 2015.
  2. ^ a b "ASA Ruling on Skytrax Research". asa.org.uk.
  3. ^ a b Engel Schmidl (13 November 2012). "Advertising Standards Authority calls out Tripadvisor and Skytrax for fake user reviews". SmartCompany.com.au. Retrieved 28 August 2019.
  4. ^ Mario Kossmann (2006). Delivering Excellent Service Quality in Aviation. Ashgate Publishing. pp. 67–71. ISBN 0-7546-4725-0.
  5. ^ "Skytrax rates the world's best".
  6. ^ World Airline Awards
  7. ^ World Airport Awards
  8. ^ Survey information, Skytrax website
  9. ^ http://simpliflying.com/2011/why-skytrax-is-dead-plus-7-insights-into-the-future-of-airline-brand-ratings/
  10. ^ "Skytrax airline quality claims under scrutiny". Travelmole. 8 November 2012. Retrieved 3 July 2019.
  11. ^ https://www.ausbt.com.au/etihad-airways-withdraws-from-skytrax Chris Chamberlin, "Etihad Airways withdraws from Skytrax", Australian Business Traveler, June 8, 2014]
  12. ^ https://www.paddleyourownkanoo.com/2018/02/16/inside-strange-world-skytrax-aviation-rating-organization-probably-shouldnt-trust/#.XR0NlS2ZPUI
  13. ^ "Understanding the players during airline and airport awards season", Skift, March 2015
  14. ^ "Outrageous: Turkish Airlines Downgraded To Skytrax 3-Star Airline", One Mile at a Time, May 11, 2019
  15. ^ https://onemileatatime.com/turkish-airlines-skytrax/
  16. ^ a b c d "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 31 May 2010. Retrieved 13 July 2013.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
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  37. ^ HKIA wins top accolades
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  39. ^ Airport of the Year 2006 Archived 31 December 2006 at the Wayback Machine
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  44. ^ Airport of the Year 2011 Archived 30 July 2013 at the Wayback Machine
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External linksEdit