Although this year’s award-winning airline is Singapore Airlines, there are other well-known airlines that have made a lot of effort to improve themselves in order to stand out above the rest. That is why Skytrax also awards these types of carriers, recognizing them as most improved over the course of one year.

The World’s Most Improved Airline award reflects an airline’s overall improvement in various categories including miles program, products (seats, comfort, food, drinks, etc.), cabin staff service, and ground service. With that said, here are the top five on this year’s list.

China Southern Airlines

China Southern Airlines has made drastic changes, progressing upwards in both the products it offers and service it provides. It’s also considered the best out of the three airlines controlled by the Chinese government. China Southern Airlines is a four-star airline, according to the Skytrax airline quality index, and as Nick Newman, the airline’s commercial manager, says, “China Southern Airlines is “the largest four-star airline in the world”.

The carrier received the same award several years ago, so it’s no surprise that it has once again been named number one in this category this year.

Philippine Airlines

Number two on this year’s list of world’s most improved airlines is Philippine Airlines (PAL). It just recently became a certified four-star airline, the only one in the Philippines. PAL’s list of improvements includes a new business class, an updated Brand Visual Identity that brings the company together as a whole, and upgrades on the ground service, especially for business and first class passengers.

Fiji Airways

Number three on this year’s list is Fiji Airways, a move upwards to the top five as it was in seventh place on last year’s list. Some major improvements include the launch of the Oneworld Connect program, which will expand services to those holding Oneworld Emerald or Sapphire status, additional flight routes and frequencies, and a brand new flagship lounge in Nadi International Airport.


Number four on this year’s list of world’s most improved airlines is Ryanair, which, interestingly enough, is in the same position it held in last year’s list. Ryanair continues to make changes for the better while keeping ticket costs low. Some of these include better ground transportation, more connections, additional routes, better claim processing, simpler bag policy and punctuality. They are also working to be the greenest airline by going completely plastic-free in five years.

Japan Airlines

Last but not least on this year’s top five is Japan Airlines. Last year, the airline installed their newest Sky Suite III business class seat across their Dreamliners, which was a major plus. One of the biggest improvements that customers rave about is the attentive service from their cabin crew, well-organized ground staff, and a pleasant cabin. Japan Airlines also received the Skytrax award for Best Economy Class Airline Seat this year.

Other notable airlines that made it to this years list include Air Mauritius in sixth place, Malaysia Airlines in seventh, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines in eighth, Aeroflot in ninth, and RwandAir in tenth.