At the just concluded World Airline Awards which held at Paris, Skytrax announced the world’s Top 100 Airlines in 2017, as voted by airline customers around the world. The awards, described as “the Oscars of the aviation industry”, are most coveted Quality accolades for the world airline industry, and a global benchmark of airline excellence.
According to the list, these are the top 10 best airlines in Africa.
1. Ethiopian Airlines
Ethiopia’s flag carrier is wholly owned by the government and was launched in December 1945 and commenced operations on 8 April 1946, expanding to international flights in 1951. The firm became a share company in 1965, and changed its name from Ethiopian Air Lines to Ethiopian Airlines. Its hub and headquarters are at Bole International Airport from where it serves a network of 113 passenger destinations —19 of them domestic— and 35 freighter destinations. Ethiopian flies to more destinations in Africa than any other carrier. It is one of the fastest-growing companies in the industry. It is one of the most profitable airlines in Africa.
2. South African Airways
The largest airline in South Africa, and the second best airline in Africa, South African Airways has its headquarters in Airways Park at OR Tambo International Airport. The airline flies to 56 destinations worldwide, in partnership with SA Express, SA Airlink and its low cost carrier, Mango, within South Africa and across the continent, and nine intercontinental routes from its Johannesburg hub at OR Tambo International Airport, using a fleet of 54 aircraft.
3. Air Mauritius
Air Mauritius Limited, operating as Air Mauritius, is the flag carrier airline of Mauritius.The airline is headquartered at the Air Mauritius Centre in Port Louis, Mauritius. Its main hub is Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam International Airport. The company is the fourth largest carrier in Sub-Saharan Africa, and has an important standing in the European, African, and Indian Ocean region markets; the airline won the “2011 Indian Ocean Leading Airline Prize”, making it the seventh year in a row for it to win the award.
4. Air Seychelles
Air Seychelles is the national airline of the Republic of Seychelles, with its head office located at Seychelles International Airport on the island of Mahé. It operates inter-island services, charter services and international flights. Its main base is Seychelles International Airport. As the main driver of tourism in Seychelles, it is one of the core pillars of the national economy.
The airline is currently 40% owned by Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates.
5. Kenya Airways
Kenya Airways Ltd., more commonly known as Kenya Airways, is the flag carrier of Kenya. The company was founded in 1977, after the dissolution of East African Airways. The carrier’s head office is located in Embakasi, Nairobi, with its hub at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport.The airline was wholly owned by the Government of Kenya until April 1995, and it was privatised in 1996, becoming the first African flag carrier to successfully do so. Kenya Airways is currently a public-private partnership.
The Airline was ranked fourth among the top ten African airlines by seat capacity, behind South African Airways, Ethiopian Airlines and EgyptAir. The airline became a full member of SkyTeam in June 2010, and is also a member of the African Airlines Association since 1977.
6. Royal Air Maroc
More commonly known as RAM, Royal Air Maroc is the Moroccan national carrier as well as the country’s largest airline. RAM is fully owned by the government of Morocco, and has its headquarters on the grounds of Casablanca-Anfa Airport.
7. TAAG Angola Airlines
TAAG Angola Airlines E.P. (Portuguese: TAAG Linhas Aéreas de Angola E.P.) is the state-owned national airline of Angola. Based in Luanda, the airline operates an all-Boeing fleet on domestic services within Angola, medium-haul services in Africa and long-haul services to Brazil, Cuba, China and Portugal. The airline is a member of both the International Air Transport Association and the African Airlines Association.
Fastjet Plc is a British-based holding company for a group of low-cost carriers that are, or are expected to be, operating in Africa. The company’s stated aim is to become the continent’s first low-cost, pan-African airline.
kulula.com, sometimes simply known as kulula, (from the Nguni languages of Zulu and Xhosa, meaning It’s easy) is a South African no-frills airline, operating on major domestic routes from OR Tambo International Airport and Lanseria International Airport, both just outside Johannesburg. The airline’s headquarters are located at Bonaero Park, Kempton Park, Ekurhuleni, Gauteng.
Mango Airlines SOC Ltd, trading as Mango, is a state-owned South African low-cost airline based at OR Tambo International Airport near Johannesburg and a subsidiary of South African Airways.