Singapore Airlines wins Conde Nast best airline award: An old formula that still works

Courtesy Singapore Airlines

Courtesy Singapore Airlines

Conde Nast readers have picked Singapore Airliens (SIA) as their 2014 favorite airline, loved for its good food and comforting seating but above all, its service and customer attention. “The flight attendants are the most courteous of any airline,” said one reader. “This airline definitely treats you like a part of its family,” said another.

SIA has yet again demonstrated how an old formula still works, the personal touch and smile that never failed to win hearts. Many airlines distinguish themselves by the excellent service they provide in the front cabin, but the SIA crew are not far less friendly at the back as well even as they understandably only address premium customers by name. Of course, First and Business Class travellers are feted with champagne and treated to flat beds. Offered exclusively on its A380 aircraft are a pair of fully flat recliners that can be transformed into a double bed. The airline even boasts a “book the cook” program whereby premium customers can pre-order meals designed by top chefs.

One should always be circumspect about “best” survey results and look closely what are being measured. There is a huge bias for the grand offerings in the upper class. Nothing wrong with that since that is where the money is, all the more so when the market for Economy is more inclined to be price sensitive. Fortunately, if providing excellent customer service is in an airline’s DNA, its essence is likely to permeate from the nose of a plane to its tail, though the degree of attention, to be expected, differs.

Conde Nast readers voted Emirates Airlines as the next best after SIA for similar reasons. One reader said: “They truly care about their customers and always try to exceed expectations.” And another: “Amazing service… staff are extremely polite.”

Of course, Emirates also impressed with sought after amenities, excellent food and wines, and luxurious pre-boarding lounges for premium passengers, not to mention the shower on its A380 plane.

Third in the Conde Nast is Virgin America. This is an airline truly linked to the Richard Branson lineage. It is what you may call a “hip” airline that impresses with innovative ideas and sophisticated in-flight features such as touch-screen meal orders and seat-to-seat messaging. It is modern, offering a unique experience without losing customer focus. As one customer said, “You feel like you’re going to a club when you step on the plane. It’s modern, attentive, and their social media is amazing.” Another reader summed up, “Virgin America has a high coolness factor.”


About Dingzi
Writer by passion, with professional expertise in aviation, customer service and creative writing. Aviation veteran, author, editor and management consultant. Besides commentary on business issues and life-interest topics, travel stories and book reviews, genres include fiction, poetry and plays. Nature lover who abhors cruelty of any form to animals, and a tireless traveler. Above all, a dreamer.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: