Happy New Year! Here's your roundup of what made headlines in the airline industry over the past few weeks.
Skytrax, the leading aviation consumer website, announced Thai Airways as the best economy-class airline in the world. Since a majority of air travelers fly economy, this is a fantastic achievement! Qatar Airways and Asiana took out positions 2 and 3.
2017 was officially the safest year for aviation in history. We can thank better pilot training and more advanced tech as contributing factors. For more on safety, check out the world's safest (and least safe) airlines for 2018 as ranked by Airline Ratings.
IAG, the owner of British Airways, has announced that it will buy the insolvent Austrian airline Niki for 20 million euros. Niki's focus on leisure travel means that it's a good fit to become part of the low-cost carrier Vueling.
Wizz Air also confirmed an order of 146 Airbus A320neo family aircraft. The increased fleet will give the airline a boost towards their growth requirements, while the technology within the A320neos will help Wizz Air maintain their low-cost offering. This deal is valued at US$17.2 billion.
We came across a few firsts in the airline industry. British Airways became the first airline to trial self-service biometrics boarding, Aeroflot was the first Russian airline to utilize baggage tracking, and Air New Zealand will be the first to test customer-facing translation tech.
More on British Airways: In the first half of 2018, the airline will use New Distribution Capability (NDC) technology to deliver cheap short haul fares to the European market. Want to brush up on your NDC knowledge? The IATA describes this travel industry-supported program on their website.
The Best of the Rest
- An airline perspective on 2017 and the coming year
- 10 significant aviation investments, mergers, acquisitions in 2017
- The tech that's going to make air travel less awful
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