Bangkok Airways flies high

Bangkok Airways has reclaimed the titles of best regional airline in the world and in Asia from Dragonair, the winner in previous years.

The privately owned Thai carrier scooped the top honours at the 2014 Skytrax World Airline Awards, held at the Farnborough International Airshow in England on Tuesday.

About 18.8 million passengers from more than 100 countries take part each year in the world's largest airline passenger satisfaction survey to decide the award winners.

Bangkok Airways president Puttipong Prasarttong-Osoth yesterday said the awards were testimonials for the airline's “Service with Passion” campaign launched this year.

They also reflect the revamps undertaken across the board to the airline’s products and services for international travellers, who constitute up to 70% of the airline's clientele, said Nandhika Varavarn, vice-president for corporate communications.

The 46-year-old airline had previously been in the top five of the awards for the world’s best regional airline, while it was best regional airline six times from 2004-11.

Hong Kong-based Dragonair slipped to second in the world's best regional airline rankings this year.

Other winners in the regional airline categories were Aegean Airlines, SilkAir, Porter Airlines, Copa Airlines, JetBlue Airways, Tianjin Airlines, Alaska Airlines and Shenzhen Airlines.

Thai Airways International was again out of the world's top 10 airlines in the overall category in the latest Skytrax survey.

The Thai flag carrier was a top-10 airline several years ago but had to make do with 14th place this year.

Cathay Pacific this year overtook 2013 winner Emirates as the world's best. It was Cathay Pacific’s first victory in the most prestigious category since 2009.

Other top performers in order of ranking were Qatar Airways, Singapore Airlines, Emirates, Turkish Airlines, All Nippon Airways, Garuda Indonesia, Asiana Airlines, Etihad Airways and Lufthansa.

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