Air Transport World Names Alaska Airlines 2022 Airline of the Year 

Aviation Week Network’s Air Transport World (ATW), the leading media brand serving the information needs of the global airline and commercial air transport communities, announced today that Alaska Airlines is the 2022 ATW Airline of the Year. 

The ATW Airline Industry Achievement Awards recognize excellence across a broad range of airline operations and are widely considered as the most coveted in the air transport industry. Alaska was selected by an independent board of ATW and Aviation Week Network editors and analysts. In making their decision, they cited the company’s excellent leadership under CEO Ben Minicucci. They noted the company’s strong 2021 financial and operational performances despite the on-going challenges of the pandemic. The airline also joined the oneworld global alliance, expanding its international network. 

We have our incredible employees to thank for this honor. They are the heart and soul of our airline, taking care of each other and creating meaningful connections with our guests on every flight, every day,” said CEO Ben Minicucci. “It’s gratifying to receive this recognition during a time that has tested us all. It’s a testament to how we’ve stuck with our business plan and delivered on our safety promise, while keeping caring as our north star of all that we do.” 

Alaska has continued to innovate, launching the Ascend Pilot Academy for aspiring pilots that provides a simpler, more financially accessible path to becoming a commercial pilot at regional affiliate Horizon Air and eventually Alaska. And it became the world’s first airline to launch a subscription service, Flight Pass, that allows up to 24 roundtrips for a fixed monthly fee. 

On top of that, Alaska remains highly committed to environmental and carbon emission reductions initiatives that include collaborative research and development efforts for sustainable aviation fuels and a hydrogen-electric regional aircraft, a commitment to achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2040, the replacement of plastic water bottles and plastic cups with 100% recyclable Boxed Water, and a partnership with a Hawaiian organization that connects travelers with sustainable volunteer projects in Hawaii. The airline was also the first to implement network optimization software, Flyways, using artificial intelligence and machine learning to optimize air traffic and enable more fuel-efficient flight paths for aggregate savings of fuel, carbon emissions and time. 

“The Alaska Airlines Team is always at the top of its game with friendly customer service and a true dedication to its colleagues, community and the planet. To have stayed on top and continued to invest in its future through such challenging times shows the remarkable strength and adaptability of Alaska Airlines and we sincerely congratulate them,” said ATW Editor-in-Chief Karen Walker.  

The Award will be presented to Alaska as the top honor among the 48th Annual ATW Airline Industry Achievement Awards at a prestigious, in-person gala dinner on June 21 following the closing of the 78th IATA AGM and World Air Transport Summit. Other ATW Airline Industry Achievement Award winners will be announced shortly. 

Alaska last received ATW’s Airline of the Year recognition in 1990. Over the years, Alaska has been recognized with several ATW rankings, including the 2016 Market Leadership award, the 2012 Joseph S. Murphy Industry Award and the 2011 and 2003 Airline Technology Leadership. Its sister carrier Horizon Air was named Regional Airline of the Year in 2007.  

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