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Norwegian beaten as top budget airline

Sifting through the 2018 World Airline Awards for LCCs, Norwegian comes second (32nd overall), Ryanair 11th (64th overall).

In the Skytrax 2018 World Airline Awards announced a few weeks ago, known by many as the Oscars of the aviation industry, Singapore Airlines beat last year’s winner Qatar Airways to the top spot (see table below). But what about the best low-cost airlines?

Ryanair, perhaps the best-known LCC, rose from 76th to 64th in the overall airline rankings, putting it ahead of, for example, American Airlines, TAP and Alitalia. It is now the 11th best budget carrier in the world, the awards say.

Norwegian was found to be the second-best low-cost carrier in the world, or 32nd overall, which the newspaper the Telegraph says is due to its rapidly increasing choice of routes – increasingly, though, from the UK and Ireland rather than from airports in Scandinavia.

“You can now fly with the carrier to four continents, with direct services from the UK to a clutch of cities including Austin, Boston, Buenos Aires, Chicago, Orlando, Denver, Miami, New York, LA, San Francisco, Seattle and Singapore. Starting later this year is a non-stop route to Tampa, while Tokyo, Shanghai and Beijing could follow,” the newspaper says.

But the top budget carrier in the world according to the awards is Kuala Lumpur-based AirAsia, which places 28th overall.

“Rather unfairly, the AirAsia group fills out two spots in the table. Had Skytrax chosen to lump their short-haul and long-haul arms together, then Ryanair would have cracked the top 10. C’est la vie,” the Telegraph says.

Top 10 low-cost carriers (overall ranking in brackets)
10. Scoot (61st)
9. Eurowings (59th)
8. Southwest Airlines (57th)
7. IndiGo (55th)
6. WestJet (54th)
5. AirAsia X (47th)
4. Jetstar Airways (46th)
3. EasyJet (43rd)
2. Norwegian (32nd)
1. AirAsia (28th)

World Airline Awards 2018 top 20
Singapore Airlines
Qatar Airways
All Nippon Airways
Cathay Pacific
Hainan Airlines
Garuda Indonesia
Thai Airways
Qantas Airways
Japan Airlines
China Southern Airlines
Austrian Airlines
Air New Zealand
Turkish Airlines
Hong Kong Airlines

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