It is the first time in 14 years that the Award has been bestowed on a European carrier.
Lufthansa was selected for its across-the-board achievements that set it apart from its legacy airline peers and maintain its competitive edge against increasing low-cost carrier competition.
In 2018, Lufthansa and its Group airlines carried a record 142 million passengers, making it the largest airline group by passenger numbers, and saw all-time high average load factors.
The company kept a sharp eye on costs, while introducing new technologies and service amenities that improve the passenger experience, including biometric exit technology at Miami Airport to speed the departure process. Lufthansa became the first European airline to be awarded a Skytrax 5-star rating—testimony to its world-class customer service standards on the ground and in the air.
Lufthansa also continued to be an industry leader in sustainability, operating one of the most modern and fuel-efficient fleets and implementing numerous fuel-saving projects.
It is an honor for me to accept the ATW Airline of the Year Award on Behalf of over 135,000 Lufthansa Group employees around the world. This award is a testament to their passionate commitment in making Lufthansa the first choice for over 140 million customers in 2018. We continue to build on our reputation as pioneers in innovation, dedicated to connecting people in three hundred cities with the highest level of service and making travel memorable for them,” said Lufthansa Group chairman and CEO Carsten Spohr.
“We are delighted Lufthansa is the 2019 Airline of the Year. The Award recognizes the incredible transformation of this company and the efforts and dedication of its leadership team and people,” said ATW editor-in-chief Karen Walker.
The 2019 Airline of the Year award will be presented as the top honor at ATW’s 45th Annual Airline Industry Achievement Awards Ceremony on March 26, 2019, in New York.
Other winners this year, announced in January, include Air New Zealand, Indigo Partners managing partner William “Bill” Franke, Spirit Airlines, airBaltic, Dallas Fort Worth Airport, Airlink and the Airbus A220.
The 45th ATW Awards are sponsored by CFM International, Pratt & Whitney, Airbus, ENAC and McGill University.