Qantas named safest airline, Garuda most punctual

SINGAPORE: The world’s safest and most punctual airlines are in the Asia Pacific region.

Qantas Airways Ltd was named safest airline in the world on a top 20 list published by AirlineRatings.com, followed by Air New Zealand Ltd and Taiwan’s Eva Airways Corp.

Singapore Airlines Ltd was sixth, Cathay Pacific Airways ninth and Virgin Australia Holdings Ltd 10th.

AirlineRatings.com said it takes into account factors including audits by governing and industry bodies, crash and serious incident record, profitability and fleet age.

In a separate survey by OAG Aviation Worldwide Ltd, PT Garuda Indonesia was crowned 2019’s most punctual carrier.

Panama’s Copa Airlines SA ranked second among airlines arriving or departing within 15 minutes of scheduled times. Japan’s Skymark Airlines Inc, Hawaiian Airlines Inc and Latam Airlines Group SA rounded out the top five.

Among major US carriers, Delta Air Lines Inc was the only one to make it into the top 20.

The number of global air passengers will double to 8.2 billion by 2037 thanks to economic growth and a swelling middle class, according to the International Air Transport Association.

More than half of those fliers will come from the Asia-Pacific region, led by demand from countries like China and India. About 4.7 billion people are expected to travel this year, 4% more than in 2019, IATA said in December.

Among mega airports ranked by OAG – those catering to more than 30 million airline seats – Moscow Sheremetyevo topped the list for the best on-time performance last year. The ranking is based on the proportion of flights at each airport that arrive and leave within 15 minutes of scheduled times.

In contrast to the poor showing of its airlines, the US’ airports were top performers for punctuality. Six of the top 10 on-time airports were American, with Atlanta ranking fourth.

Seattle came in fifth, Los Angeles seventh and John F Kennedy airport entered the top 10, while Bangkok and Amsterdam dropped out.