Top 20 Safest Airlines For 2018

January 03, 2018
qantas the world’s only safety and product rating website has announced its Top 20 safest airlines for 2018 from the 409 it monitors.


The Top 20 are the who’s who of airlines and in alphabetical order are: Air New Zealand, Alaska Airlines, All Nippon Airways, British Airways, Cathay Pacific Airways, Emirates, Etihad Airways, EVA Air, Finnair, Hawaiian Airlines, Japan Airlines, KLM, Lufthansa, Qantas, Royal Jordanian AirlinesScandinavian Airline System, Singapore Airlines, Swiss, Virgin Atlantic and, Virgin Australia.

According to Editor-in-Chief Geoffrey Thomas, these airlines are standouts in the industry and are at the forefront of safety, innovation, and launching of new aircraft.

READ: World’s safest aircraft 

“For instance, Australia’s Qantas has been recognized by the British Advertising Standards Association in a test case as the world’s most experienced airline.” Qantas has been the lead airline in virtually every major operational safety advancement over the past 60 years and has not had a fatality in the jet era,” said Mr. Thomas. “But Qantas is not alone. Long established airlines such as Hawaiian and Finnair have perfect records in the jet era.”

READ: World’s Best Airlines 2018


Responding to the public interest, the editors also identified their Top 10 safest low-cost airlines. These are in alphabetical order: Aer Lingus, Flybe, Frontier, HK Express, Jetblue, Jetstar Australia/ Jetstar Asia, Thomas Cook, Virgin America, Vueling, and Westjet.

Unlike a number of low-cost carriers, these airlines have all passed the stringent International Air Transport Association Operational Safety Audit (IOSA) and have excellent safety records.  To arrive at its Top 20 takes into account the most important factors for safety that include; audits from aviation’s governing bodies and lead associations; government audits; airline’s crash and serious incident record and the fleet age.

READ: What makes a safe airline? 

Top 20 Safest Airlines For 2018 – Grading Logic and Approach

According to Mr Thomas, the site only looks at serious incidents in making its determinations.

“All airlines have incidents every day and many are aircraft manufacture issues, not airline operational problems. And it is the way the flight crew handles incidents that determines a good airline from an unsafe one. So just lumping all incidents together is very misleading. Our Top 20 safest airlines are always at the forefront of safety innovation, operational excellence and the launching of new more advanced aircraft like the Airbus A350 and Boeing 787.”

READ: The World’s First Country and Airline Safety Comparison Tool also announced its lowest ranked (one star) airlines which are; Air Koryo, Bluewing Airlines, Buddha Air, Nepal Airlines, Tara Air, Trigana Air Service and Yeti Airlines.

READ: Landing the most dangerous phase of flight

AirlineRatings was launched in June 2013 and rates the safety and in-flight product of 409 airlines using its unique seven-star rating system. It has been used by millions of passengers from 232 countries and has become the industry standard for safety and product rating. The editorial team is one of the world’s most experienced with almost 50 international and national awards. They have also authored or co-authored more than 28 industry books.


  1. Qatar Airways is not mentioned, they have not had any accidents for as far as I know. I have flown with them a couple of times and have found them to be very good.
  2. They are a great airline but to be considered in our top 20 they must score a 7/7 in the safety ratings. They fall short in the ICAO country audit.
  3. Emirates is not worthy of a mention in this list; they crashed and burned a boeing 777 in august 2016; it is a miracle no one was killed. See
  4. Dear Marilyn: You make a good point. However, nobody was killed apart from, sadly, a fireman, and under our criteria, that means no passenger/crew fatalities. We also examined what Emirates did as a result of this incident and it is impressive. Overall the airline's training and pilot pool are excellent and its fleet one of the world's best. We did not include the airline last year because of the 2016 incident. Regards, Geoffrey Thomas. Editor-In-Chief