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The world’s safest airlines in 2018

AirlineRatings.com monitors 409 carriers for both safety and product ratings using a 7-star rating system. On January 3, 2018 it announced its top-20 safest airlines for 2018 without ranking them. The top-20 comprises traditional carriers, formerly often referred to as full-service airlines, but this term is no longer adequate since they downgraded their service levels.

The top-20 safest traditional airlines in alphabetical order are: Air New Zealand, Alaska Airlines, All Nippon Airways, British Airways, Cathay Pacific Airways, Emirates, Etihad Airways, EVA Air, Finnair, Hawaiian Airlines, Japan Airlines, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, Lufthansa, Qantas, Royal Jordanian Airlines, SAS, Singapore Airlines, Swiss, Virgin Atlantic and, Virgin Australia.

These carriers are at the forefront of safety innovation, operational excellence and the launching of new more advanced aircraft like the Airbus A350 and Boeing 787. Seven of the safest airlines are from Europe, 5 from Asia, 3 from the Middle East, 3 from Oceania and only 2 from the USA.

To arrive at its top-20 the site takes into account the most important factors for safety: 1) audits from aviation’s governing bodies and lead associations; 2) government audits; 3) airline’s crash and serious incident record, 4) the fleet age.

AirlineRatings.com only looks at major operational incidents in making its determinations. Thus, they do not look at minor incidents carriers have every day that are often aircraft manufacture issues. “Just lumping all incidents together is very misleading,” says AirlineRatings.com editor-in-chief Geoffrey Thomas.

maintenanceThe site also identifies its top-10 safest low cost airlines. These are in alphabetical order: Aer Lingus, Flybe, Frontier, HK Express, Jetblue, Jetstar Australia, Thomas Cook, Virgin America, Vueling, and Westjet. Unlike a number of low cost carriers, these carriers have all passed the stringent International Air Transport Association Operational Safety Audit (IOSA) and have excellent safety records.

AirlineRatings.com also announced the 7 lowest ranked airlines (with 1 star). With 1 exception they are all from Asia (of which 4 from Nepal). These 1-star carriers are Air Koryo (North Korea), Bluewing Airlines (Suriname), Buddha Air (Nepal), Nepal Airlines, Tara Air (Nepal), Trigana Air Service (Indonesia) and Yeti Airlines (Nepal).

Tags: airline safety, airline product, operational incidents

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