The two South African airlines ranked among the best in the world

 ·7 Jul 2024

Several South African-based airlines were honoured at the recent 2024 Skytrax World Airline Awards, with LIFT clinching the title as the best low-cost airline in Africa, while South African Airways (SAA) ranked as the third-best and cleanest carrier on the continent according to the awards.

Often referred to as the ‘Oscars of the aviation industry,’ or the ‘Passenger’s Choice Awards,’ the awards began in 1999 based on customer satisfaction surveys as to which airlines they consider to be the best.

The 2024 awards were based on an online customer survey operated from September 2023 to May 2024.

LIFT ranked number one for ‘Best Low-Cost Airlines in Africa 2024.’ Company CEO Jonathan Ayache said that the company is “absolutely thrilled to receive our first-ever Skytrax Award [as it] is a huge feat for our domestic airline that has been around for just shy of four years.”

The ‘Best Low-Cost Airlines in Africa 2024’ ranking was followed by FlySafair, who took the 2nd spot

AirAsia was named the World’s Best Low-Cost Airline for the 15th consecutive year.

In the Best Regional Airline in Africa ranking, Airlink took the 3rd spot, and 17th in the world rankings. Regional airlines are defined as full service carriers that primarily operate domestic and / or international flights up to approximately 6 hours.

Royal Air Maroc (Morocco) took first place Best Regional Airline in Africa, while Bangkok Airways took the global regional ranking’s top spot.

Additionally, LIFT and Airlink made the top 10 of the ‘World’s Most Improved Airlines 2024,’ at 7th and 10th respectively.

Looking at the ranking of ‘the overall World’s Top 100 Airlines 2024,’ South African Airways (SAA) ranked 69th, up from 72nd in 2023.

This makes the state-owned airline the third-best carrier on the African continent.

SAA also clinched the title as the Cleanest Airline in Africa, which is based on ratings of the standard and quality of cleanliness in the aircraft of seat areas, tables, carpets, cabin panels and washrooms.

Additionally, looking at the ranking for Best Airline Staff in Africa, which looks at the combined quality of front line airline staff service for both the airport and the onboard experience, SAA placed 2nd (behind Kenya Airways), Airlink placed 4th, Lift 9th and FlySafair 10th.

According to the ranking, the Top 10 airlines in the World for 2024 were:

Airline2024 ranking2023 rankingChange
Qatar Airways12+1
Singapore Airlines21-1
ANA All Nippon Airways43-1
Cathay Pacific Airways58+3
Japan Airlines65-1
Turkish Airlines76-1
EVA Air89+1
Air France97-2
Swiss International Air Lines1012+2

The full list of awards can be found here.

Read: New luxury international flight coming to South Africa

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