World's Top 100 Airlines announced: how did SAA rank?
Asian and Middle Eastern airlines soared at the 2019 World Airlines Awards — the Oscars of the aviation industry — which is no surprise given how such carriers have monopolised the upper echelons of this kind of ranking in recent years.
The awards were launched 20 years ago by Skytrax, a UK-based consultancy operating an airline and airport review and ranking site. Between September 2018 and May 2019, customers of more than 100 nationalities took part in the global passenger satisfaction survey used to decide this year's winners.
Qatar Airways was named the World's Best Airline for 2019, with Singapore Airlines and Japan's ANA All Nippon Airways completing the top three podium.
No African or US airlines, and just one European airline (Lufthansa) feature in this year's global top 10.
So how did South African Airways (SAA) do? It was ranked 46 out of 100 international airlines, dropping one spot from 45th place last year.
It fared better on a regional level, where it was voted second-best in Africa for 2019. Ethiopian Airlines and Air Mauritius took the first and third places respectively.
SAA was also applauded for having the best airline staff, best airline cabin cleanliness and best cabin crew in Africa.
For the full list of the World's Top 100 Airlines 2019, see worldairlineawards.com
• Additional reporting by staff reporter