Every year, Skytrax conducts an airline customer satisfaction survey and from this they get the World Airline Awards. They have released the World Airline Awards for 2018, with our focus obviously being put to the best airlines in Africa.
The methodology used to select the airlines for the awards is based on cabin service, ground/airport and onboard conduct.
Here are the best airlines in Africa:
1. Ethiopian Airlines
The ever-ambitious carrier always dazzles with new heights and have maintained their first position in Africa for a second year running. Ethiopian Airlines now have new aircraft valued at around $332 million. It is wholly owned by the state and at present it operates 96 passenger aircraft and freighters and has more than 60 fleets on order. These figures easily makes the carrier the largest in Africa. It continues to create more destinations, opening up new markets and is easily the most profitable airline in Africa.
2. South African Airways
Besides being the second best airline in Africa, South African Airways also won the Best Airline Staff in Africa at the same awards. SAA also won the Best Business Class Lounge, Best Cabin Crew and Best Airline Cabin Cleanliness. SAA owns Mango, a low-cost domestic airline, and has established links with Airlink and South African Express. It is a member of the Star Alliance. It has 35 destinations and has a fleet size of 47.
3. Air Mauritius
The airline has retained its position as of last year. It is Mauritius' flag carrier airline. The company is the fourth largest carrier in Sub-Saharan Africa, and has an important standing in the European, African, and Indian Ocean region markets; the airline won the "2011 Indian Ocean Leading Airline Prize", making it the seventh year in a row for it to win the award. It has a fleet size of 15 and has 24 destinations.
4. Air Seychelles
Air Seychelles is currently owned 40% by Etihad Airways, the national carrier for the United Arab Emirates. Its company slogan is "Flying the Creole spirit". In January 2018, Air Seychelles reported a major restructuring which leads to the closure of its remaining long-haul route to Paris as well as the return of its two Airbus A330 long-haul aircraft. Amongst other cost saving measures, the airline will focus on its regional network in the future. The airline offers international flights to Abu Dhabi, Antananarivo, Johannesburg, Mauritius, Mumbai, Durban, Düsseldorf and Paris.
5. Kenya Airways
Kenya Airways was the first carrier to successfully undergo privatisation, in 1996. The Federal Aviation Administration gave its tentative approval for Kenya Airways to fly to John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York starting from October 2018. Different in-flight entertainment is available depending upon the aircraft and the class travelled. The airline's in-flight magazine is called 'Msafiri', and is distributed among the passengers in all aircraft, irrespective of the class. The carrier plans to add up to twenty new destinations in Africa, Europe and Asia in the next five years. Five sub-leased aircraft are to re-join the fleet by the end of 2019 to facilitate this move.
6. Royal Air Maroc
The Royal Moroccan Airlines is Morocco's national carrier. It is fully owned by the government. From its base at Mohammed V International Airport, the carrier operates a domestic network in Morocco, scheduled international flights to Africa, Asia, Europe, and North and South America, and occasional charter flights that include Hajj services.
Mango Airlines has made some good improvements, as it was in 10th position last year. It is a state-owned South African low-cost airline based at OR Tambo International Airport near Johannesburg and a subsidiary of South African Airways. It acts independently with its own Board and balance sheet.
As a low cost airline, Mango features a uniform fleet of aircraft with high seating density. Mango also offers online ticketing. A standard booking does not include food and drinks. Mango offers a buy on board programme offering food and drinks for purchase.
Mango provides an in-flight magazine Mango Juice along with Mango TV, a daily in flight entertainment programme viewable on the drop-down televisions placed throughout the aircraft. It also offers in-flight WiFi services for a fee.
Fastjet remains etched at position 8 in Africa. The aim of Fastjet is to become the continent's first low-cost, pan-African airline, and the operation was initially created with the acquisition of Fly540, an airline operating in East Africa; flights in Fastjet's own name commenced in November 2012 in Tanzania. It is a British/South African-based company with the intention to achieve the aim of providing low-cost air travel.
On board passengers will find a copy of the airline’s in-flight magazine, fastjet Places. It is also available to read online via www.fastjet.com.
Hot, cold and alcoholic beverages, as well as a selection of sweet and savoury snacks are available for purchase on all flights. The full in-flight menu can and does vary across the different routes.
kulula.com, sometimes simply known as kulula, (from the Nguni languages of Zulu and Xhosa, meaning It's easy) is a South African no-frills airline, operating on major domestic routes from OR Tambo International Airport and Lanseria International Airport, both just outside Johannesburg. The airline's headquarters are located at Bonaero Park, Kempton Park, Ekurhuleni, Gauteng.
10. TAAG Angola Airlines
It has dropped from 7th place to 10th place. It is the state-owned national airline of Angola. Based in Luanda, the airline operates an all-Boeing fleet on domestic services within Angola, medium-haul services in Africa and long-haul services to Brazil, Cuba, China and Portugal. The airline was originally set up by the government as DTA – Divisão dos Transportes Aéreos in 1938, rechristened TAAG Angola Airlines in 1973, and gained flag carrier status in 1975. It is now a member of both the International Air Transport Association and the African Airlines Association.