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Air Best and Air Worst

Discussion in 'Travel' started by SageAdvice, 10 Jan 2017.

  1. SageAdvice

    SageAdvice Thread Starter Well-Known Member

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    On the worst list, I've flown with Hong Kong Airlines: the flights to and from HK departed and arrived on time, though the aircraft itself was older and the food in business was execrable. My one El-Al flight was from Addis Ababa to Tel Aviv: the airplane had to follow a rather circuitous route due to Arab Derangement Syndrome (ADS) while both take-off and landing resembled strafing runs. Of the best, I'd quickly state that I'll never fly Iberia (abrupt moves in the air ignoring passenger comfort) or Delta (commercial flying on most American airlines is tedious at best, stroke-inducingly frustrating at worst: fellow passenger masses are, indeed, asses). Excellent experiences with KLM and ANA (my preferred choice to the States), however.

    These Are the Best- and Worst-Performing Airlines in the World

    Consult this list before picking your next long-haul flight.
    by
    Nikki Ekstein
    January 9, 2017, 2:01 PM GMT+7 January 10, 2017, 12:48 AM GMT+7
    For those who insist that traveling is all about the journey, we say this: It really depends on which carrier you’re flying.

    Aside from variations in cabins and service quality, there’s the major concern of how likely you are to get delayed. Fly on the wrong airline and your odds of a delay are as high as 55 percent; choose the right one and that number shrinks way down to just 11 percent. That’s enough to make or break a vacation's spell, no matter where you're sitting on the plane.

    [​IMG]
    Don't be this guy.

    Photographer: FlairImages/Getty Images/iStockphoto
    But how do you know which airlines to steer clear of, and which ones to prioritize?

    Every year, the aviation insights company FlightStats puts together a list of the international airlines with the best on-time performance records. It’s the capstone to the company’s year-round efforts to track delay and cancellation patterns for airlines across the globe. We’ve asked them to share all of their annual findings so we can point out the losers, too. Without further ado, here are the full results, along with your likelihood of getting delayed on each carrier:

    The Worst 10 International Airlines of 2016
    • 10. Hainan Airlines – 30.3 percent
    • 9. Korean Air – 31.74 percent
    • 8. Air China – 32.73 percent
    • 7. Hong Kong Airlines – 33.42 percent
    • 6. China Eastern Airlines – 35.8 percent
    • 5. Asiana Airlines – 37.46 percent
    • 4. Philippine Airlines – 38.33 percent
    • 3. Air India – 38.71 percent
    • 2. Icelandair – 41.05 percent
    • 1. El Al – 56 percent
    The Best 10 International Airlines of 2016
    • 10. Qantas – 15.7 percent
    • 9. TAM Linhas Aéreas – 14.93 percent
    • 8. Delta Air Lines – 14.83 percent
    • 7. Singapore Airlines – 14.55 percent
    • 6. ANA – 14.46 percent
    • 5. Austrian – 14.26 percent
    • 4. Qatar Airways – 13.66 percent
    • 3. JAL – 12.2 percent
    • 2. Iberia – 11.82 percent
    • 1. KLM – 11.47 percent
    [​IMG]
    For the best luck in travel, fly KLM.

    Photographer: studioportosabbia/Getty Images
    According to Jim Hetzel, vice president of aviation and distribution at FlightStats, compiling the list is no small feat. The only comparable resource is the monthly report (PDF) that the U.S. Department of Transportation puts out on major domestic carriers, relying uniquely on self-reported data from the biggest carriers in the United States; it doesn’t factor in any of those airlines’ international flights.

    [​IMG]
    Whether you fall on the "delayed" or "on-time" end of the spectrum can depend on your airline choice.

    Photographer: LeoPatrizi/Getty Images
    “We stitch data together from 500 different sources,” said Hetzel, likening the process to creating a giant quilt.

    Among those sources are flight-tracking and positional services, airport runway times, radar services, airline records, airport data, and such governing bodies as Eurocontrol and the Federal Aviation Administration. “All of these pieces come in in different formats, all with different elements of value, and a lot of times the sources don’t agree,” said Hetzel as to why his business is so unrivaled.

    “We’ve built the technology and logic to sort that out and validate information across multiple sources. It’s a pretty interesting process,” he said.

    [​IMG]
    Sorry, El Al.
    Photographer: santirf/Getty Images
    As for this year’s results? Hetzel says they’re the best numbers yet. “I’m seeing a big improvement in overall performance across the board as the industry becomes more and more competitive,” he said, noting that on-time performance has become a major selling point for airlines. “It’s a huge win for travelers.” (Air India disagrees with the above assessment, spokesperson Dhananjay Kumar said in a statement.)

    [​IMG]

    Photographer: GrashAlex/Getty Images/iStockphoto
    In an especially impressive coup, Delta still ranked in the top 10 carriers after suffering a days-long system outage in the summer that made headlines around the world. Other results go against the grain of local reputations for punctuality. Latin American carrier Copa would have taken the top spot on this list if its route network were larger; it didn’t qualify it as a truly international carrier because it doesn’t serve three or more regions with a substantial route network. And Swiss fell in the middle of the pack, notwithstanding Switzerland's identification with precision clockwork.
     
  2. gungchang

    gungchang Well-Known Member

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    For the benefit of dirty old men, there should be an alternate rating system that takes into account how young and pretty the stewardesses are.

    My worst flight was a domestic Lao Aviation flight on a dilapidated Soviet turboprop.

    Surprisingly, my best flight might have been business class on the Mexican carrier from DF to LA.

    Singapore does indeed have good in-flight service, and the stews must be fit to wear those clingy uniforms, but one woman on the ground staff was a real snotty bitch. I learned that Singapore to Penang was considered a domestic flight and my business class ticket did not get me into the business lounge. It almost seemed like she was making a point of keeping me out. I persisted and she asked if I had a gold card. As I recall, that flight put me over 50,000 miles and qualified me. She was almost triumphant as she turned me away. I've only had one other obnoxious clerk, and that was United in Bakersfield, Calif.

    Best lounge was at Kimpo in Seoul. Great booze, great food, and showers that gushed more hot water than I'd ever experienced in my life. I was transferring to a trans-Pacific flight and that shower was appreciated.
     
  3. Internationalteacher

    Internationalteacher Well-Known Member

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    Aw, sicko! lol


    My experience flying Korean Air was quite good the few times I took it. On the other hand, I totally agree with Air China and Eastern Airlines as being the worst. I've flown them many times over the last three years and they are never on time. The food is pretty crap too. Other then that they are okay. I often wonder if they aren't on time because there is always too many flights taking off from Beijing, but then I took them in Shanghai and the same problem. Too many flights and people in China for flights to be on time.. I'm guessing. Still no excuse though for having to often wait on the tarmac for an hour or more waiting in a line of planes waiting to take off. A warning for those that fly those airlines taking off in China at least.

    Air Canada isn't too bad as I often take them internationally. I agree about JAL as being up there in service and the food is great.
     
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  4. IntEdSource

    IntEdSource Member

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    Without a doubt, the worst experiences I've ever had were on China Eastern flights. You're surrounded by loud, obnoxious people who will not stop talking loudly, standing up and walking around, and constantly opening overhead compartments and window shades, including when the lights are out so people can (try to) sleep. The bathrooms were filthy, and you can't even avoid the smell when you're not in them...particularly in my case, as I had a Chinese man sitting next to me who decided to lift his leg and fart repeatedly. To top it off, as soon as every flight touches the ground, every person stands up as the flight attendants try and fail to make them all sit.

    I swore to myself that I would never, ever fly China Eastern again no matter how cheap it is.

    On the other hand, the best experience I've had, excluding business class on Delta, was Cathay Pacific. I purposefully selected the two-seat option near the back, which meant extra leg room and no one next to my wife and me. The seats also felt a tad larger than many other airlines. Even though it was near the bathrooms, it was quiet. The food and entertainment selection were both quite good, and people were very polite.
     
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  5. Internationalteacher

    Internationalteacher Well-Known Member

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    ^LOL.. I totally know what you mean about the loud people, and annoyances on Chinese Eastern. What I hate is when they kick your seat! They are loud that's for sure...and getting up every minute. I'm almost used to it now, because when I fly a decent airline it is like heaven for me.

    I just remembered that I have flown Hainan Airlines once. It was a long haul flight from Beijing to Toronto. OMG! It was the very worst flight I've ever been on. All the above you mention, plus I had a seat next to the bathroom and it stunk so bad that I almost barfed. People were pissing on the floor.. I said never again with Hainan and will never fly with them again.
     
  6. professeur

    professeur Well-Known Member

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    My worst flight was from Amsterdam to Bangkok with China Air some 8 years ago. Nothing wrong with the plane or the service but rather with one very annoying passenger right in front of me who decided to recline his seat while the plane was still on the ground! During the flight he was told several times by the staff to put seat upright during take off and meals, but every time he would recline his seat again as soon as the air hostess wasn't looking. Annoying prick he was!
     
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  7. stfranalum

    stfranalum Well-Known Member

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    no Cathay Pacific on that list??
     
  8. gungchang

    gungchang Well-Known Member

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    I'm flying with them next week.
    I fart like a tuba. I was worried about that. Now I think I'll fit right in.

    Ha! If somebody farts in my direction, I'll return fire and send him flying through the air like Mighty Mouse.
     
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  9. Hey_ewe

    Hey_ewe Well-Known Member

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    Emirates have always been very good between here and the UK. New planes good service, food, seat size and legroom. Onward connections at Dubai well organised. Air India is in the bottom 10 but I've always had positive experiences with them, even when I had a delay due to a strike. The food is great and the baggage allowance is enormous if you join their frequent flyer club. British Airways have great service and food but the aircraft used on the Bangkok to Heathrow route is very old. I had a cold air con unit dripping on me for about 2 hours on one flight with no other seats available to switch to.
     
  10. Gor Blimey Guvnur!

    Gor Blimey Guvnur! What the duck ! Staff Member

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    :thumbs upAye, used them twice and a third time next month. Also good timing for take off and landing on the Gatwick arrival and departure too.

    Qatar are a close 2nd for me. B.A twice (bit more dosh as direct to blighty) and fine. Jet airways to blighty too was fun as I enjoyed the food but lol the Thais on the plane didn't. However the connection in India there and back is a bit traumatic. Eva air once direct and was on par with B.A.

    Never fly again airlines: Kuwait air, arrgghhh! bad food, crap airport in Kuwait ...just not good. Thai airways, used them 3 times, twice delayed, no apologies (last time flying from swampy plane had a problem for 4 hours and they made all the passengers sit in the departure bit as we had already checked in for flight ...no sorry, no food or drinks ...no nothing) rude staff and at the end of the day not that cheap now too.
     
  11. Hey_ewe

    Hey_ewe Well-Known Member

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    Yes, I’ve flown with Jet airways too and they were good. If either Air India or Jet airways are available for a reasonable price, I’ll often make them my first choice. Up to 46kg of baggage allowance in economy. Both Delhi and Mumbai airports have been dramatically renovated over the last few years. The security screening between transfer lounge and departures is 'full on' with large queues. I don’t mind thorough screening in the slightest but you need to make yourself well known if you have a short wait until the connecting flight.

    Thai and BA are vastly overpriced in my opinion. Thai airways are often double the price of Qatar, Ethiad or Emirates and they are all far superior airlines in every respect.
     
  12. muppetminder

    muppetminder Active Member

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    Flew a Lao prop plane in mid 90s. It lost one of its engines briefly. Old Russian plane.

    I'd seen this article online. I've always thought Korea Air was +2. The food is crap and stingy with booze. But a solid airline and on time always BKK ICN to many USA airports SFO LAX IAD LAS so I'm calling bullshit.
     

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