UAE’s national carrier Etihad Airways recently won the prestigious’ Airline of the Year 2016’ award. A reputed U.S.-based aviation publication Air Transport World announced the Abu Dhabi-based airline as the winner.
Etihad Airways was particularly lauded for its strong executive leadership, which played a crucial role in devising a profitable strategy for the airline thus resulting in its tremendous organic growth. The airline’s innovative products and top notch services, as well as unique equity partnerships were effusively appreciated.
Media reports said that Etihad Airways withstood fierce opposition by legacy U.S. carriers and succeeded in defending its business model in a diplomatic and dignified way. The airline was also acclaimed for building a highly motivated workforce and laying foundations for others in future.
The publication’s editorial board selected Etihad Airways for the top honor. The airline emerged with flying colors amid a stiff competition with above 100 airlines from world over entering the fray. The ATW Airline Industry Achievement Awards is held annually. The 42nd edition of the award was held at a time when the Singapore Air Show also took place.
The winners of the award are selected based on many criteria, which includes among others employee relations, safety, customer service, financial performance, and outstanding capabilities and achievements. Moreover, the winning airline’s executive leadership team should also show strategic thinking and innovation that distinguishes it from others.
James Hogan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Etihad Airways, said, “The coveted Airline of the Year 2016 award is a testimony to our remarkable efforts to remain profitable, safe and simply the best ever since Etihad Airways came into being 13 years ago. The company has performed exceedingly well in creating a robust business model, launching innovative products and providing superior service to the customers. It is a matter of great pride and delight in accepting the award. We have not only expanded our business but also offered the traveling public a unique proposition that has gone into transforming the global aviation landscape itself.”
Karen Walker, Air Transport World Editor-in-Chief, said, “The introducing of unique cabin interiors in Boeing 787 and Airbus A380 aircrafts by Etihad Airways has invariably set industry benchmarks. ‘The Residence’ deserves special mention. The concept of a three-room apartment on board an aircraft, which is the first ever in the world, consisting of a lounge, a bedroom and ensuite shower, is in fact a revolution of sorts in luxury air travel. This has placed the airline on the highest pedestal and undoubtedly the best in the world. It would not be absolutely wrong to say that Etihad Airways has shown its bold attitude and displayed innovation at its best.”