Flying is one of the safest modes of travel—far safer than riding in a car—but it's still reassuring to know the airline you're traveling with has top-notch credentials. Enter AirlineRatings, an Australian research site that releases a list of the world’s safest airlines each year. For those of you already planning a 2018 vacation, the publication just came out with this year’s top picks, according to CNN.
AirlineRatings uses airline crash records, fleet age, record of serious incidents, and government and industry audits to identify the 20 safest international airlines among 409 carriers. Below are the airlines that made the final cut this year. They were all ranked equally, so you'll be in good hands no matter which one you choose to fly with:
Air New Zealand
All Nippon Airways
Cathay Pacific Airways
Royal Jordanian Airlines
Scandinavian Airline System
On the whole, 2017 was a safe year for air travel, as the BBC recently reported. According to airline industry data and aviation consultants, every single commercial passenger jet landed at its final destination, making it the safest year on record. Still, certain airlines are “standouts in the industry and are at the forefront of safety, innovation, and launching of new aircraft,” according to AirlineRatings. (We should note that Emirates did have a crash in 2016, but all the passengers got away safely—and one even won the lottery with a ticket he bought before boarding.)
In particular, AirlineRatings Editor-in-Chief Geoffrey Thomas lauded respected legacy airlines like Hawaiian and Finnair, along with Australia’s Qantas, which “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,” he said in a statement. Go ahead, board with confidence.