SIA named 2023 Airline of the Year for strong Covid-19 recovery

It was praised for its cost-cutting and innovative initiatives.

Ilyda Chua | February 15, 2023, 03:18 PM

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Singapore Airlines (SIA) has been named Airline of the Year in the 49th Annual Air Transport World (ATW) Airline Industry Achievement Awards.

Not for the first time, either — it previously received the award in 2008 and 1989.

The national airline was selected for its "rapid and decisive" response to the Covid-19 travel restrictions, ATW said.

It noted that SIA raised S$22.4 billion in fresh liquidity — the most by any airline during the pandemic.

The airline also was praised for engaging in cost-cutting and innovative initiatives that kept it on a strong footing to re-enter the market upon the reopening of borders.

Since then, SIA has posted record passenger load factors and is set this year to exceed pre-pandemic levels in the Americas, Europe, and South-Asia markets, ATW said.

Unwavering resilience

In response, SIA's chief executive Goh Choon Phong said the accolade was testament to the indomitable spirit of everyone at SIA, reported The Straits Times (ST).

He added that the staff demonstrated "unwavering resilience" as the airline navigated the pandemic, dedicating themselves to ensuring that they would emerge stronger than before.

"We will continue to strive to exceed our customers’ expectations... and set new standards in the airline industry," he told ST.

Getting back on their feet

SIA's days of pandemic cost-cutting measures circa 2020, when they laid off crew, cut salaries, and grounded planes, now appear to be history.

Since border controls were eased, SIA has been speedily on the mend.

It posted record revenues from June to end-September 2022, and in December recorded its highest passenger load factor in its history, ST reported.

It also announced last May that it plans to hire 2,000 cabin crew by March 2023.

Top image via Unsplash