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20 Best Airlines in the World in 2021

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In this article, we take a look at the 20 best airlines in the world in 2021. You can skip our detailed analysis of the aviation industry and go to the 5 Best Airlines in the World in 2021.

The airline industry was hammered due to the coronavirus crisis, and continues to feel the reverberations of it. International Air Transport Association's analysis shows that up to 4.8 million jobs in aviation might be lost by the beginning of next year, a 43% reduction from pre-COVID levels. Also, IATA research findings show that a loss of over $630 billion was suffered worldwide in GDP benefits from the decline in air travel. Major companies like American Airlines Group Inc. (NASDAQ: AAL), The Boeing Company (NYSE: BA), United Airlines Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: UAL), Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) and Delta Air Lines, Inc. (NYSE: DAL) continue to suffer heavy losses as travelers remain reluctant to fly amid the new variants and outbreaks of the virus.

However, the situation is not totally hopeless. Major airliners have already started to see strong signs of recovery. In the U.S., where more than half of the adult population has received its first shot of the COVID-19 vaccine, domestic travel is making a strong comeback. Over the last few weeks, American Airlines Group Inc. (NASDAQ: AAL) planes have been 80% full on average. Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) also saw high traffic in April. Delta Air Lines, Inc. (NYSE: DAL) and United Airlines Holdings Inc. also turned cash-flow positive.

As governments scramble to vaccinate their populations in Asia and other parts of the world, international travel is bound to come back to normal.

If you are planning for that much-needed vacation and need some help deciding which airline to choose, here is our list of the 20 best airlines in the world in 2021. We rank these airlines by giving them scores for important metrics like wait times, comfort, flight quality and claim processing.

Most valuable airline companies in the world
Most valuable airline companies in the world

Best Airlines in the World in 2021

20. American Airlines Group Inc. (NASDAQ: AAL)

American Airlines Group Inc. (NASDAQ: AAL) is the top American airline headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas, USA. It is the world's largest airline when measured by fleet size, scheduled passengers carried, and passenger revenue per mile. Raymond James recently increased its ratings for American Airlines Group (NASDAQ:AAL), citing an expected recovery in profitability and a more balanced risk-reward profile.

19. United Airlines Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: UAL)

United Airlines Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: UAL) is the parent company of United Airlines. It is a major American airline headquartered at Willis Tower in Chicago, Illinois. United Airlines operates an extensive domestic and international route network spanning cities large and small across the United States and all six continents. The score of United Airlines Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: UAL) in terms of its on-time performance is 8, quality of service is 8 and claim processing is 6.7.

18. Korean Air Lines Co., Ltd. (KSE: 003490.KS)

The Korean Air Lines Co. Ltd. (KSE: 003490), operating as Korean Air, is the largest airline and flag carrier of South Korea based on fleet size, international destinations and international flights. The airline's global headquarters is located in Seoul, South Korea. The score of Korean Air in terms of its on-time performance is 8.2, quality of service is 8.2, claim processing is 6.8. The overall score of the airline is 7.73 out of 10.

17. Japan Airlines Co., Ltd. (TYO: 9201.T)

Japan Airlines Co., Ltd. (TYO: 9201) is an international airline and Japan's flag carrier, headquartered in Shinagawa, Tokyo. Its primary hubs are Tokyo's Narita International Airport and Haneda Airport and Osaka's Kansai International Airport, and Itami Airport. The score of Japan Airlines in terms of its on-time performance is 8.3, quality of service is 8.3 and claim processing is 6.9. The overall score of the airline is 7.83 out of 10.

16. Hainan Airlines Holding Co., Ltd. (SSE: 600221.SS)

Hainan Airlines Holding (SSE: 600221) is the parent company of Hainan Airlines. It is headquartered in Haikou, China and famous because of the high quality of its airport and onboard product and staff service. The score of Hainan Airlines in terms of its on-time performance is 8.3, quality of service is 8.4, claim processing is 6.9. The overall score of the airline is 7.86 out of 10. The airline ranks 16th in our list of best airlines in the world in 2021.

15. PT. Garuda Indonesia (Persero) Tbk (IDX: GIAA.JK)

PT. Garuda Indonesia (Persero) Tbk. (IDX: GIAA.JK) international airlines Garuda Indonesia is the flag carrier of Indonesia, headquartered at Soekarno–Hatta International Airport. It is regarded as a 5-star certified airline in terms of its quality of service and performance. The score of Garuda Indonesia in terms of on-time performance is 8.4, quality of service is 8.4, claim processing is 6.9. The overall score of the airline is 7.9 out of 10. The airline ranks 15th in our list of best airlines in the world in 2021.

14. Asiana Airlines, Inc. (KSE: 020560.KS)

Asiana Airlines, Inc. (KRX: 020560) is the parent company of Asiana Airlines. The score of Asiana Airlines in terms of on-time performance is 8.5, quality of service is 8.5, claim processing is 6.8. The overall score of 7.93 out of 10. The airline ranks 14th in the list of best airlines in the world in 2021.

13. All Nippon Airways, Owned by ANA Holdings Inc. (TYO: 9202.T)

ANA Holdings Inc. (TYO: 9202.T) airline, All Nippon Airways or ANA, is the largest airline in Japan by revenues and passenger numbers. Its headquarters are located in Shiodome City Center in the Shiodome area of Minato ward of Tokyo.

The score of ANA in terms of on-time performance is 8.4, quality of service is 8.6, claim processing is 6.9. The overall score of the airline is 7.96 out of 10.

12. Cathay Pacific Airways Limited (HKSE: 0293.HK)

Cathay Pacific Airways Limited (HKSE: 0293.HK), more widely known as Cathay Pacific, is the flag carrier of Hong Kong, with its head office and central hub located at Hong Kong International Airport. The score of Cathay Pacific in terms of on-time performance is 8.2, quality of service is 8.9, claim processing is 6.8. The overall score of the airline is 8 out of 10.

Like American Airlines Group Inc. (NASDAQ: AAL), The Boeing Company (NYSE: BA), United Airlines Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: UAL), Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) and Delta Air Lines, Inc. (NYSE: DAL), Cathay is one of the best airlines in the world in 2021.

11. Virgin Australia Airlines

Virgin Australia, the trading name of Virgin Australia Airlines Pty Ltd. (ASX: VAH), is an Australia-based airline. It launched services in 2000 as Virgin Blue, with two aircraft on a single route. The score of Virgin Australia Airlines in terms of on-time performance is 8.2, quality of service is 8.8, claim processing is 6.9. The overall score of the airline is 8 out of 10.

Like American Airlines Group Inc. (NASDAQ: AAL), The Boeing Company (NYSE: BA), United Airlines Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: UAL), Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) and Delta Air Lines, Inc. (NYSE: DAL), Virgin Australia is one of the best airlines in the world in 2021.

10. Delta Air Lines, Inc. (NYSE: DAL)

Delta Air Lines, Inc. (NYSE: DAL), typically referred to as Delta, is one of the major airlines of the United States and a legacy carrier, headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia. It is one of the best US airlines due to its on-time performance rated at 8.2. Quality of service is 8.9, claim processing is 7. The overall score of Delta Air Lines, Inc. (NYSE: DAL) is 8.10 out of 10.

9. Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV)

Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) is the highest-ranked US airline due to its quality service and performance. It is one of the major airlines of the United States and the world's largest low-cost carrier airline. It is headquartered in Dallas, Texas and has scheduled service to 111 destinations in the United States and ten additional countries. The score of Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) in terms of on-time performance is 8.3, quality of service is 9.1, claim processing is 7.1.

8. Deutsche Lufthansa AG (ETR: LHA.DE)

Deutsche Lufthansa AG (ETR: LHA.DE) is the largest German airline. The score of Lufthansa Airlines in terms of on-time performance is 8.2, quality of service is 9, claim processing is 7. The overall score of 8.10 out of 10.

Like American Airlines Group Inc. (NASDAQ: AAL), The Boeing Company (NYSE: BA), United Airlines Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: UAL), Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) and Delta Air Lines, Inc. (NYSE: DAL), Lufthansa is one of the best airlines in the world in 2021.

7. EVA Airways Corp. (TWSE: 2618.TW)

EVA Airways Corporation (2618.TW) is the flag bearer airline of Taiwan based in Taoyuan International Airport near Taipei, Taiwan. The airline has operating passenger and dedicated cargo services to over 40 international destinations in Asia, Australia, Europe, and North America.

It is a certified 5-star airline for the quality of its airports, onboard product and staff service. The score of EVA air in terms of on-time performance is 8.32, quality of service is 9.3, claim processing is 7. The overall score of the airline is 8.21 out of 10.

6. Etihad Airways (Private)

Etihad Airways is the second flag carrier of the United Arab Emirates. Its head office is in Khalifa City, Abu Dhabi, near Abu Dhabi International Airport. Etihad commenced its operations in November 2003. The airline provides flights to more than 110 destinations on six continents. The score of Etihad Airways in terms of on-time performance is 8.35, quality of service is 9.4, claim processing is 7. The overall score of the airline is 8.25 out of 10.

Like American Airlines Group Inc. (NASDAQ: AAL), The Boeing Company (NYSE: BA), United Airlines Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: UAL), Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) and Delta Air Lines, Inc. (NYSE: DAL), Etihad is one of the best airlines in the world in 2021.

Click to continue reading and see the 5 Best Airlines in the World in 2021.

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Disclosure: None. 20 Best Airlines in the World in 2021 is originally published on Insider Monkey.