It was named the World’s Leading Airline last night at a black-tie gala event in Doha, Qatar. The judges also presented Etihad Airways with awards for the World’s Leading First Class and World’s Leading Airline to the Middle East.
These three awards cap an extraordinary 12 months for the airline. Highlights included the launch of seven new international routes, a move into operating profitability and the purchase of a 29.2 percent stake in AirBerlin, a landmark deal that enables access to 33 million new passengers in Europe.
The World Travel Awards – described as the “Oscars of the travel industry” by the Wall Street Journal – recognise the best airline, hospitality and tourism brands in the world. Judges look for excellence in categories such as customer relations, creativity, and quality of service, product innovation and business acumen.
Etihad Airways’ success in Doha follows recognition at the World Travel Awards Middle East in May, when the airline took home awards for Middle East’s Leading Airline, Middle East’s Leading Airline First Class, Middle East’s Leading Cabin Staff and Middle East’s Leading Airline In-flight Entertainment.
Peter Baumgartner, Etihad Airways’ Chief Commercial Officer, hoists the award for World’s Leading Airline, at the 2011 World Travel Awards gala event held in Doha, Qatar. The airline also received recognition for World’s Leading First Class and World’s Leading Airline to the Middle East.