High in the sky...
Flying can be an important factor when traveling if you want to go anywhere particularly quickly or non-continental. There is definitely a good case for finding an airline that you generally like and maintaining that loyalty. But on the other hand, sometimes it's just nice to try some new ones out! There are a plethora of factors when choosing, though one simple way to look at it is cost vs. quality. Here are some of the best in each category.
The Cheapest Airlines
Providing dirt cheap flights might not necessarily be a hallmark of the best airlines, but I definitely think cost should be taken into consideration. It’s also important to keep in mind that airline prices differ depending on time of the year and travel location.
AirAsia has remarkably held the title of the World’s Best Low-Cost Airline for 8 years running. What once began as a previously failed state-run airline evolved into a multinational force due to helpful customer service. Routes are limited to Asia. Meals, beverages, and entertainment options vary.
2. Virgin America
Virgin America is the most consistently low-priced airline in North America. Unlike its rival, Southwest, Virgin America offers class, cleanliness, and top-of-the-line service, and still manages to keep its prices down. One of the major drawbacks is its inconvenient flight routes.
Norwegian provides cheap flights throughout Europe and the Americas, with great options for seat reservations, snacks, entertainment, and WiFi access within Europe and between the US and the caribbean. It’s rumored to start offering flights between the US and Europe for $69.
The airline carries over 230 Airbus jets that fly to over 800 places throughout Europe. You’re only allowed one cabin bag, but there’s no official weight restriction for it. EasyJet has repeatedly been praised for its low prices and solid service.
The Highest Quality Airlines
Not including exclusive-access and private luxury flights, these are my choices for the best airlines in terms of overall quality of service, amenities, and comfort.
1. Qatar Airways
Providing flights to over 150 destinations around the world, Qatar Airways is highly regarded for its super comfortable seats and excellent in-flight entertainment. It’s definitely the best airline in the Middle East, and arguably the best business class airline in the world.
2. All Nippon Airways
All Nippon Airways is the biggest international airline in Japan and has steadily been moving up in quality rankings every year. It’s particularly beloved for its cleanliness, in-flight service, and safety. Several neat features include reclining chairs that slide forward and power and USB outlets.
Emirates has had, hands down, the best in-flight entertainment — including music and videos on demand and live television — out of any commercial airlines in the past 15 years. It mainly flights through Dubai International Airport and houses some of the world’s finest long-haul carriers.
4. Eva Air
Eva Air is most famous for the combination of cleanliness and comfort it offers you. It continues to improve its already awesome amenities, some of which include soft pajamas, award-winning wines, lie-flat seats, and fully stocked washrooms. It’s stationed in Taiwan.
Combining both price and standard, the research says that the current top value among the best airlines is Air Asia. It’s not quite as luxurious as any of the high quality airlines, but it’s way more affordable (you can save hundreds of dollars) and still relatively clean and comfortable.
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